Defending the family

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Faith Groups and the Hobby Lobby Aftermath

Conservative faith groups were quick to voice apprehension over the executive order when it was first announced in June, with several Catholic bishops expressing "great concern" over how it might affect partnerships between the government and faith-based nonprofits. Then on Tuesday, the day after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to exempt closely-held corporations from the Affordable Care Act's contraception mandate on religious grounds, a group of 14 prominent faith leaders sent a letter to the President arguing that faith-based nonprofits that use federal funds but who do not embrace homosexuality should be exempt from the order. The letter was somewhat unusual, because while it listed several traditionally conservative voices such as megapastor Rick Warren, it also included the signatures of faith leaders who are fairly close to the administration, such as Michael Wear, former faith outreach director of Obama's 2012 campaign for president.