CREDIT: AP Photo/Charles Dharapak
On Monday, the Supreme Court is expected to deliver a highly-anticipated ruling in a case regarding whether for-profit companies can claim a religious exemption to Obamacare’s contraceptive coverage requirement. Two companies, Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties, argue that covering some types of birth control violates their religious liberty. Although there’s no telling how the justices will rule, most Americans already have their minds made up about the issue at hand.
According to a new Reuters/Ipsos poll that surveyed more than 10,600 people earlier this month, the majority of Americans don’t believe that business owners should be able to invoke their religious beliefs in order to avoid offering contraceptive coverage to their workers.
When asked whether employers should be able to choose what types of birth control they cover based on their religion, just 35 percent of participants agreed. Meanwhile, 53 percent disagreed — and the majority of that group was firmly opposed to the idea. Forty percent of respondents said they “strongly disagreed” that for-profit companies should be able to refuse to cover certain contraceptive methods for religious reasons:
The Reuters/Ipsos polling falls in line with previous polling that has found most Americans don’t side with Hobby Lobby.
Last month, the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) found that Americans make a clear distinction between specifically religious employers, like churches, and other types of businesses — so although most people favor allowing churches to claim an exemption to Obamacare’s birth control mandate, they don’t think that for-profit companies should be able to do the same. In April, a Kaiser Family Foundation poll found that 55 percent of the public believe that companies should be required to cover birth control even if it violates their owners’ personal religious beliefs. Polling conducted in 2012 found that most Americans view birth control coverage as a matter of women’s health care, not as a matter of religious liberty.