Thursday, March 29, 2012

Who Might Get a Religious Conscience Exemption from Obamacare?

AKA: Affordable Care Act

Religious Freedoms at Risk

According to the left’s Think Progress, “Timothy Cardinal Dolan of New York took his case against the Affordable Care Act’s new rule requiring insurers and employers to provide preventive care services — including contraception.”

According to an interview with Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly this week, Dolan: explained that Expanding Access To Birth Control Would Undermine ‘The American Enterprise,’ and Spread ‘Secularism.’

Think Progress’ inane answer to Dolan was:

But since most Americans — and Catholics — reject the Church’s teachings against contraception, Dolan is fighting an uphill battle that will persuade only the most ardent Catholic conservatives.

As Dolan pointed out to O’Reilly, it’s about a tenant of faith and not about a popularity contest. Progressives want to cloud the issue of religious liberty because they know that they can’t possibly win the argument.

This is a matter of religious liberty for all faiths, not just those who oppose artificial contraception.

Obviously, the issue isn’t about contraception but about forcing any religion to go against its own teachings and that’s why it’s an issue that has brought Catholics, Jews and Protestants together.

Religious Groups or Sects That Might be Exempted

There have been rumors and discussions among various religious groups as to their eligibility for religious exemptions or waivers: Amish, Anabaptists, Christian Scientists, Hutterites, Mennonites, Muslims, Native Americans, Scientologists etc.

According to Snopes, (which does not allow their sacred text to be copied), the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” (PPACA), or what is better known as “Obamacare,” does not specifically exempt members of any particular religion or sect from health insurance requirements. However, the bill does contain a general “Religious Conscience Exemption.”

It hasn’t even been decided yet as to which religious groups might qualify for the exemption but most likely they would be groups described in Section 1402(1) of the Internal Revenue Code., “which governs exemptions from the payment of Social Security and Medicare taxes on self-employment income.”

Basically it is thought than an individual would be able to file for an exemption if he/she is a member of a religion or sect that has had a history of objecting to public or private insurance.

  • The individual would have to provide evidence of membership in and adherence to the teachings of the religion or sect.
  • An exemption would mean that the individual would have to give his/her waiver of all Social Security Act benefits. (Yea right. . .sure. And who pays when one of these exempted is in an accident and rushed to the hospital? We pay! It may sound like an argument from the left, but if these exemptions/waivers grow in popularity only Catholics, Protestants, Jews and Athiests will be paying for Obamacare!)
  • The religion or sect would have to have been in existence since December 31, 1950.
  • An individual could not have an exemption if a benefit or other payment would have come payable before the filing of the waiver.

This health insurance MANDATE kicks in on March 20, 2014, unless found to be unconstitional by the SCOTUS or overturned.



  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. This is a great job in spelling this subject out, for all Americans to read! Thanks you Bab's for putting this commentary together so quickly!

  3. Thanks Roland for bringing it to my attention!