NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Everyone 22News spoke with in Northampton said this was a step backwards in American history, but, there were reasons for the Supreme Court’s ruling, and we found out what they were.
A victory for companies with religious affiliations, like Hobby Lobby, is considered by many a setback for women’s rights in America.
It took a divided Supreme Court three months of deliberations to rule 5-4 in favor of for-profit companies to be exempt from covering the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive mandate.
Steven Savage of Northampton said, “The pill is used for a lot more than contraception. Many women use it for other health reasons.”
“I don’t understand it at all. I don’t even know why it was able to pass,” said Deb Klein of Greenfield.
Like many Supreme Court decisions, this one was made along party lines. The five justices in the majority were conservatives; the four in dissent were liberals.
The Supreme Court always looks at preceding court decisions. For example, Monday’s ruling was based off a 1993 law. Now, many fear that this decision will set precedent for future court decisions having to do with how much religious affiliation can impact medical care coverage.
Attorney James Winston said lawyers could try to interpret this to fit different healthcare cases. “The lower courts sometimes analyze a case or decision more broadly or unintended consequences that the Supreme Court never intended when they made the decision.”
He said Congress can still counteract the ruling by making amendments to existing laws.
While Hobby Lobby finds it wrong to pay for things like the morning after pill, it still pays for men’s vasectomies and Viagra.