Call Greg Hengler a cynic. Barack Obama explained on Friday that he’s being reasonable with all of these benighted Catholics and other religious organizations who object to facilitating contraception and abortifacients that their doctrines consider immoral. It’s merely a few with a cyncal desire to play politics with health care that are causing Obama a political headache:
Here’s the relevant quote, emphasis mine:
And that’s why, from the very beginning of this process, I spoke directly to various Catholic officials, and I promised that before finalizing the rule as it applied to them, we would spend the next year working with institutions like Catholic hospitals and Catholic universities to find an equitable solution that protects religious liberty and ensures that every woman has access to the care that she needs.
Now, after the many genuine concerns that have been raised over the last few weeks, as well as, frankly, the more cynical desire on the part of some to make this into a political football, it became clear that spending months hammering out a solution was not going to be an option, that we needed to move this faster. So last week, I directed the Department of Health and Human Services to speed up the process that had already been envisioned. We weren’t going to spend a year doing this; we’re going to spend a week or two doing this.
Not to be too cynical about this, but Obama last spoke with those Catholic officials months ago regarding his mandate. And no one at the White House bothered to contact them when it came time to offer this “accommodation,” as the bishops made clear on Friday after the Obama administration announced it. That sounds a lot like a cynical desire to punt a political football rather than figuring out exactly why the church objected to it in the first place. And that failure looks like the product of a cynical desire to impose the same mandate while making it look like a compromise.
Frankly, this looks like a case of projection — and a cynical case at that.
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