Earlier this month, a federal appeals court sided with a coalition of Catholic hospitals, a Catholic university, and Catholic nuns who run health clinics for the poor by permanently blocking the Biden administration's attempt to invoke the Affordable Care Act to force them to perform gender-transition procedures.
The Eight Circuit concluded that the administration's plan would violate a key federal law protecting religious freedom, making this the second time that a federal appeals court has ruled in Sisters of Mercy v. Becerra in the medical workers' favor.
"The administration just has refused to take no for answer up until now," comments Joe Davis, legal counsel for Becket. "The case was first filed back in 2016. The Obama administration was the first one to try to include this requirement, and the Biden administration has picked up the baton."
Davis says whether the administration will appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court remains to be seen.
"It's an attempt to impose ideology on medicine, and it's a very good thing that the court said that they couldn't do it," the attorney asserts.
Davis notes that a court ruled in favor of the religious objectors in a similar case in Texas, and he says that shows a mountain of precedence is building for the plaintiffs involved in this case.