Poll: Americans Overwhelmingly Side With the Little Sisters of the Poor

Christine Rousselle
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Posted: Apr 18, 2016 1:20 PM
Poll: Americans Overwhelmingly Side With the Little Sisters of the Poor

A new Marist Poll shows that Americans overwhelmingly think the government is not being fair by forcing religious-based groups like the Little Sisters of the Poor to provide contraception in their insurance plans. The Little Sisters, along with a host of other faith-based groups, are currently in the middle of a Supreme Court suit over the legality of the mandate. The groups are arguing that the "compromise" offered by the government still forces them to violate their consciences, and that many non-religious organizations were "grandfathered" in and do not have to include contraception in their insurance plans.

According to the Marist poll, over 50 percent of those surveyed say that the "accommodation" is unfair.

By a more than 20-point margin (53 to 32 percent) a majority of Americans say that the process demanded by the government’s “accommodation” is “unfair.” Unlike many other religious organizations or those organizations whose health plans are “grandfathered” and are “exempt” from providing contraception and abortion-inducing drugs, the Little Sisters and many other religious employers are required by the government to sign a form directing their contractors to deliver such coverage through these religious employers’ own health plan.

After hearing the case on March 23, the Supreme Court – in a highly unusual move – requested additional filings from the attorneys for both the government and the religious employers, including the Little Sisters of the Poor. The initial round of filings was made on April 12. A second filing will be made on April 20.

The Little Sisters of the Poor (and other organizations) upgraded their plans prior to the release of the HHS Contraception Mandate. When they tried to switch back to their old plans (and be grandfathered), they were informed that their new plans no longer existed.

Nobody should be forcing the Little Sisters of the Poor, or any faith-based group, to violate their consciences. It's a good thing that a majority of Americans agree.