Obamacare Provision That Forced Doctors To Go “Woke” Is Blocked

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 In 2010, Democrats in Congress passed the Affordable Care Act (ACA) via a party-line vote in both chambers of Congress. On March 23, 2010, President Barack Obama signed the legislation into law, and it became known as Obamacare. Since its inception, religious rights groups have alleged various aspects of the law violated their freedoms.

On Friday, December 9, the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals ruled the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) couldn’t force doctors and health providers to provide gender transition surgeries against their conscience. It ruled Obamacare violated their liberties and blocked the woke policy.

Obamacare Violates Religious Freedoms, Again

The ACA doesn’t allow sex discrimination by healthcare providers that receive funding from the federal government. In 2020, the Supreme Court (SCOTUS) ruled that Obamacare violated the religious rights of the Little Sisters of the Poor, a Catholic charity run by nuns. The law required insurance providers to include contraception in their plans. In a 7-2 decision, the high court said the government couldn’t compel the group to violate their sincerely held beliefs and force them to pay for contraception through health insurance plans.

After Biden assumed office in January 2021, the HHS re-interpreted the ACA and instituted a ban on healthcare discrimination based on gender identity. Now, the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals said in a unanimous 3-panel ruling that the Biden administration could not compel Catholic healthcare providers to perform gender transition surgeries.

The ruling sided with a federal district judge in North Dakota, who declared the HHS rule infringed on the plaintiff’s liberties and violated the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA).

Luke Goodrich, VP and senior counsel at Becket, the attorney representing the plaintiffs, said the “federal government has no business forcing doctors to violate their consciences.” He called it a “common-sense” ruling that makes sure doctors can perform their duties while living up to the Hippocratic Oath of “do no harm.”

Eight Circuit Agrees With Fifth Circuit Court Ruling

In August, the conservative Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled the federal government did not have the Constitutional authority to force religious organizations to perform abortions or gender transition surgeries. The agency rule also said discrimination on the basis of sex required healthcare professionals who get funding through programs such as Medicare and Medicaid was illegal.

As such, they were forced by law to provide care based on gender identity against their religious beliefs. Doctors or hospitals who didn’t comply could have faced severe financial consequences.

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