Missouri Representative Paul Weiland doesn't want his daughters taking birth control, and he's taking the Obama administration to court to stop the Affordable Care Act from giving it to them for free.
Weiland has three daughters -- two adults ages nineteen and eighteen, and a thirteen-year-old -- who are covered under the family health insurance plan. Weiland and his wife, Teresa, object to birth control for religious reasons, but thanks to Obamacare, their daughters can access birth control at no additional cost.
Now the Weilands are suing, telling the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to stop Obamacare from interfering with their parenting -- especially after the U.S. Supreme Court's recent ruling in favor of Hobby Lobby.
Timothy Belz, the Weilands' lawyer, told the court that making birth control more accessible is like the government saying "that parents must provide a stocked, unlocked liquor cabinet in their house whenever they're away for their minor and adult daughters to use, and Mormons came in and objected to that. It is exactly the same situation."
The Weilands filed their complaint before Hobby Lobby filed its lawsuit saying closely held companies should be able to deny employees contraceptive coverage for religious reasons, but a lower court threw the Weilands' case out before the high court announced its landmark decision. Now, the Weilands are appealing, and they hope the Hobby Lobby verdict will back them up.
"The employees are to Hobby Lobby what the daughters are to Paul and Teresa Wieland," Belz said in court.
This isn't the first time Weiland has tried to take the Affordable Care Act down in court. Last summer, Weiland, a pro-life Republican from Imperial, sued the government because his state-sponsored health plan covered "gravely immoral practices," including birth control.
"As a devout Catholic, I believe in the sanctity of life from the moment of conception until natural death," Weiland told Daily RFT after filing that lawsuit. "Anything that interferes with that I see as intrinsically evil."
The Archdiocese of St. Louis also sued over the Affordable Care Act's mandated birth-control coverage and won a preliminary injunction in July, meaning the private employer doesn't yet have to pay for employees' birth control.