On October 6, 2020, the United States Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case on the issue of whether individual FBI agents can be held financially liable if they are found to have violated the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The underlying case involves Muslim-Americans who alleged that individual FBI agents put them on the “no fly” list after they refused to act as informants against fellow Muslims in terrorism-related investigations.
Ginsburg wrote little on the religion clauses, but she frequently joined with those Justices who favored a strong separation of church and state.
The Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) permits lawsuits seeking money damages against individual federal employees.
Attorney Ryan Snow has released a new book that is designed to bring non-lawyers up to date on the most important religious liberty debate facing America. Religious Freedom: What’s All the Freedom About recounts the history behind religious freedom laws, and includes an history of how Congress passed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, or RFRA, in 1993 – a feat hardly imaginable today.
In a stunning report, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights Chairman Martin Castro attacked the Religious Freedom Restoration Act at both the state and federal level, challenged the terms “religious liberty” and “religious liberty” as code for intolerance, and argued that free exercise rights should yield to other civil rights if they come into conflict.
Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear a case involving a Washington state requirement that all pharmacies must fill contraceptives regardless of the religious objections of the owners.
Rep. Joseph Kennedy (D-Mass) and Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA) have introduced HR 5272 to limit the scope of the Religious Freedom Act (RFRA) of 1993.
This morning the eight-member United States Supreme Court heard the contraceptive mandate cases that were consolidated under the name Zubik v. Burwell (Docket Number 15-191). (See transcript.) They key issue in all the cases was religious employers who rejected the method of receiving the “religious employer exemption” to the Affordable Care Act (2010) which required group health plans and insurance issues to offer plans that provided “approved contraceptive methods, sterilization procedures, and patient education and counseling for all women with reproductive capacity.”
In an effort to understand the longest-serving Justice’s influence and the importance of his replacement, here is a brief survey of how Scalia decided in several key cases.
If Congress, which passed both RFRA and Obamacare, believes RFRA’s application goes too far, Congress could decide to repeal all or part of RFRA.