During our fight against the Obama edict mandating that Catholic organizations provide coverage for abortion-inducing drugs, contraception and sterilization, we made international headlines and were featured on the Drudge Report.

The Obama administration made three strategic errors: 1) this issue is first and foremost not about contraception—it is about religious liberty 2) by mandating that Catholic entities provide coverage for abortifacients, the Obama administration made it clear that its ultimate goal was to demand that all healthcare plans provide for abortion coverage, and 3) it seriously underestimated the clout of the bishops.

We were inundated with support from Protestants, Jews, Mormons, and others. When the federal government seeks to impose a radical secular agenda on religious entities, denying them the right to exercise their doctrinal prerogatives, it is trampling on the First Amendment rights of the faithful.

Everyone knows that contraception is not only inexpensive, it is widely available free of charge. What the Obama administration did by demanding that Catholic non-profits provide coverage for abortion-inducing drugs was to put the camel’s nose in the tent—the slippery slope mandating that Catholic hospitals perform abortions has been stepped on.

Today’s crop of Catholic bishops, led by Timothy Cardinal Dolan and Bishop William Lori (he heads the Ad Hoc Committee on Religious Liberty), is more willing than ever before to engage the culture and not walk away from a fight. So Obama’s advisers really blew it big time when they counted on the usual Catholic passivity—these are not ordinary times.

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