Ruling ends Alabama-based Eternal Word Television Network’s court fight over Health and Human Services mandate
After more than seven years, Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) can now practice their faith without fear of violating Obamacare’s contraception mandate.
EWTN, which is headquartered just outside of Birmingham in Irondale, reached a settlement agreement after it was approved by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, according to The Washington Free Beacon.
The court decided to dismiss a 2016 court order that would have forced EWTN to comply with Obamacare’s mandated healthcare coverage of birth control and abortifacients that are prohibited by the Catholic Church.
The station, which was founded by Catholic nun Mother Angelica of the Annunciation and the Department of Health and Human Services, filed a brief in October seeking to dismiss the case after the Trump administration planned to reverse the Obama era attempt to force compliance.
“The Government has abandoned and rejected the defenses it used to argue against EWTN’s claims,” the motion said. “As a result of the Government’s 180-degree change of position, the parties have reached an agreement to resolve the remaining issues between them.”
Michael P. Warsaw, EWTN’s CEO, said the dismissal should have come earlier.
“It shouldn’t take years to prove the obvious: you can’t tell a religious media network to say one thing and do another,” Warsaw said in a statement, per Free Beacon. “We are grateful that—finally—EWTN no longer has to worry about being forced to choose between massive fines and following our faith.”
EWTN was represented in the case by Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, a non-profit public interest law firm. Senior Counsel Lori Windham rejoiced in the closing of the case and said those at the station can now practice the faith they live by without penalty.
“EWTN lives by its Catholic faith all day every day, expressing its beliefs worldwide in TV, radio, and print,” Windham outlined in the statement. “We are glad that the government and the courts agree that it can continue doing that without being forced to violate its faith.”
Kyle Morris also contributes daily to Breitbart News. You can follow him on Twitter @RealKyleMorris.