CLEVELAND – Religious freedom is now at the center of several federal lawsuits filed by Cleveland-based attorneys representing the Catholic church against a so-called ObamaCare mandate.
On Monday, the Cleveland-based law firm Jones Day filed twelve lawsuits in federal courts across the United States on behalf of more than forty Catholic institutions, including Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio.
Attorneys said the lawsuits will seek to protect core constitutional principles—the free exercise of religion.
The federal regulation under ObamaCare would require religious organizations to provide, pay for and facilitate insurance coverage for services including abortion and contraception they say violates their religious beliefs.
“It’s the Catholic institution that’s paying for the coverage through the insurance companies, including those that are self-insured. In other words, they do it themselves but they would be mandated to have to now pay for these services,” said Cleveland Diocese Spokesperson Bob Tayek, who says the Cleveland Diocese fully supports the legal actions.
The lawsuits have been filed in twelve federal jurisdictions including here in Ohio, the District of Columbia, New York and Pennsylvania.
A White House spokesman has reportedly declined to comment on the lawsuit.