Notre Dame Enters the Minefield, Plus the Other Businesses Who Will Deny Contraceptive Care After Hobby Lobby
In her dissent on Monday’s Supreme Court ruling in favor of Hobby Lobby, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said, “The court, I fear, has ventured into a minefield.” Seems like she was right. The Supreme Court’s decision means that lower courts will apply the ruling to other similar cases, and there’s no shortage of “closely-held corporations” that want to get out of Obamacare’s contraceptive care mandate. Gretchen Borchelt, senior counsel and director of state reproductive health policy for the National Women’s Law Center, told The Daily Beast, “Other closely held companies now have a license to harm their employees in the name of the company’s religion. If companies qualify, they can use this decision to make the same claim.”
A closely-held corporation is one with more than 50 percent of stock owned by five or fewer people. Within that constraint, the number of employees or annual revenue can vary greatly, Ginsburg noted in her dissent. Mars Inc., for example, has 70,000 employees and counts as a closely held company. As does Cargill, the largest private company in America. It makes more than $136 billion every year in revenue.
Spanning industries and varying in size, 50 for-profit companies and 59 non-profits have filed lawsuits against the ACA’s contraception mandate. They range from boutique law firms to giant universities. Because Roman Catholic teaching bans most forms of contraception, the Catholic University of Notre Dame is one notable non-profit challenger. Famous for its Division I "Fighting Irish" athletic program, Notre Dame employs at least 5,590 people and boasts a $9 billion endowment.
The Daily Beast took stock of all 82 anti-contraceptive companies; we give a sampling to show you just how much impact this SCOTUS ruling could have.