The five men who voted on the U.S. Supreme Court to reel in a part of the Affordable Care Act’s birth-control provisions deserve a serious scolding.
They’re getting it now in the wake of that 5-4 court ruling that involves “closely held” companies, such as Hobby Lobby.
They ruled that these firms are not compelled to offer contraception coverage under the ACA. Some of these companies, such as family-owned Hobby Lobby, can cite religious grounds for refusing to provide coverage for female employees. IUDs, for example, are seen by some as a form of abortion. So, the court said, they don’t have to offer that kind of insurance provision.
Five justices — Chief Justice John Roberts and associate justices Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, Anthony Kennedy and Samuel Alito — comprise the majority. Of the four court members who dissented, three of them — Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor — are, quite clearly, women; the fourth is Stephen Breyer.
The fact that five men decided this key ruling that affects women provides ammo for those seeking to make inroads in the upcoming mid-term elections. I’m going to bet that we’ll see this ruling show up in campaign ads around the country — perhaps even in Texas — as candidates seek to take note of the decision that has such an impact on the health care that women can receive from their employers.
Let’s add also that all five of the men comprising the court majority were appointed by Republican presidents. Let us also note that one isn’t likely to hear a single word, not one utterance, from those on the left complaining about “unelected judges” wielding too much power without having to answer to the voters for their decision.
The “answering” part will be left ultimately to voters who will get to determine who they want to sit in the president’s office and who they want to appoint the next Supreme Court justice when that opportunity presents itself.