(Washington, DC) — Hobby Lobby is an evangelical-owned business that has filed suit against the Obama Administration’s contraceptive/abortion mandate. Baptist Press says with more than 500 stores in 41 states it is the largest business yet to take action against the mandate.
David Green is Hobby Lobby’s founder and CEO and says the company’s insurance plans cover contraceptives preventative in nature, but will not cover anything causing a chemical abortion.
“These abortion-causing drugs go against our faith,” said David Green, founder and chief executive officer of Hobby Lobby Stores Inc, in a call with reporters. “We simply cannot abandon our religious beliefs to comply with this mandate.”
Hobby Lobby, an arts and crafts retailer founded by evangelical Christians, sued the Obama administration on Wednesday to stop a mandate under the federal healthcare reform law to provide drugs such as the morning-after pill to employees through their health insurance.
The U.S. Justice Department did not respond to a request for comment on the lawsuit on Wednesday.
Hobby Lobby is facing a Jan. 1 deadline to comply with the mandate. Should it refuse, it would face a penalty of up to $1.3 million per day, under the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, a lawyer representing the company said.
The company, which has 13,240 employees in 41 states, is based in Oklahoma City, where it began in 1972. It funds a variety of Christian charities, closes its stores on Sundays and plays inspirational Christian music in its stores.
Hobby Lobby is the largest and only non-Catholic company to sue over the health mandate, according to the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, a nonprofit, public interest law firm in Washington, D.C., that specializes in church-state law and is helping litigate the case.