The Supreme Court Is Not Doing Its Job

Slate, online 19 May 2016
Author: Dhalia Lithwick
“On the merits, Monday’s Supreme Court unsigned opinion in Zubik v. Burwell, a vitally important contraception mandate case, is being read by some as a win for the Little Sisters of the Poor because the court didn’t brush off their claims that notifying the government they are unable to cover contraception for employees, thereby enabling insurers to do so, burdens their religious freedom. Others are hailing it as a big win for the Obama administration, which will get most of what it wanted if the Little Sisters can live with the court’s proposed compromise, including “seamless” health coverage for women employees. Really, though, Zubik—which raised crucial questions about whether one person’s religious freedom can trump a worker’s entitlement to preventative healthcare—is mainly just an inkblot for the ages; a placeholder until a real court can be reconstituted to do its job.”
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