PRESS RELEASE: Bishops Insincere in Finding Real Solutions

Posted February 07, 2013

US bishops reject contraceptive workaround and claim HHS accommodation still unacceptable

WASHINGTON – The US Conference of Catholic Bishops today released a statement saying the Feb. 1 compromise offered by the Department of Health and Human Services that completely removed religious employers from dealing with contraceptive services was still unacceptable.

While this announcement is as perplexing as it is disheartening, the deeper story is that the bishops seem more interested in playing to the trumped-up concerns of a far-right political movement rather than the real-world concerns of the faithful and Catholic employers.

“This announcement by the bishops today has zero to do with finding solutions to real problems and everything to do with scoring political points for the far right,” said James Salt, executive director for Catholics United. “This displays the sad state of affairs in the hierarchy in America. One is forced to ask the question: where are the adults in the room at the USCCB?”

The move comes as a surprise as the compromise had ameliorated the concerns of several far-right pundits.

“This announcement is especially shocking because even conservatives like the Catholic League’s Bill Donohue disagrees with the bishops,” said Salt. “Are we really at a point where everything the Obama administration touches makes the bishops take their marbles and go home?”

Look for more analysis on this proposed rule at our blog: http://www.ourdailythread.org/content/strange-bedfellows and http://www.ourdailythread.org/content/hhs-mandate-primer.

Founded in 2004, Catholics United, and its educational arm, Catholics United Education Fund, are non-profit, non-partisan organizations dedicated to promoting the message of justice and the common good found at the heart of the Catholic Social Tradition.

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