July 16, 2014

Manchin Statement on Hobby Lobby

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) today issued the following statement on voting on the motion to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to Protect Women's Health From Corporate Interference Act of 2014, which overturns the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby ruling to require all for-profit companies to comply with the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive mandate. The Supreme Court ruled in the Hobby Lobby case that closely-held corporations and individuals have similar religious rights under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act passed in the early 1990s. Cloture was not invoked on the motion to proceed by a Senate vote of 56-43.

“Today, I voted in support of overturning the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision that ruled for-profit companies can opt out of providing contraceptives to their employees because of religious beliefs. As Governor and U.S. Senator, I have always fought to protect the sincerely-held religious views of non-profit organizations, like soup kitchens, colleges, hospitals and similar non-profit organizations. However, for-profit corporations do not have the same legal privileges as non-profits, and therefore they should not have the same protections as non-profits recognized by law as being a religious organization. This legislation strikes a balance between allowing non-profit organizations to hold onto their religious views while ensuring that Americans have access to safe, affordable and reliable preventative health benefits.”