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Health and Human Services Department facing a -- -- from the Catholic Church over the mandate for employee contraception coverage.
Former Utah governor Mike Leavitt secretary health and human services under the Bush Administration with me -- -- sir good morning to you.
-- good morning bill you know that the New York archbishop Timothy cardinal Dolan was talking about this with Fox News earlier in the week and went to -- have a quick listen to this and we'll get you to -- you.
It just eliminate that that haven't played -- of the federal government to define religion.
We'll be we'll we'll we'll step back.
Because it will be able to rejoice in the religious freedom for which this country stands will be able to keep up our ministries which we considered to be rather essential to our faith.
Then we'll live happily ever after so it shows it's -- narrow and assist the choking nature of these exemptions that HHS has put out.
Lord knows which people I mean this is in the fight that we asked for -- and it's not a fight that were relishing we'd -- Love -- put it behind us and get back to normal and be left alone.
I think the phrase that people are picking up on the choking nature it's the -- here.
What do you make of the cardinal's comments.
Well I agree with them entirely this is an action by government that essentially.
Denies the capacity of the church and its members.
To play out its conscience and its own way and imposing the widow of government.
It to eliminate the freedom of religion that religion is always played -- very important role in American society.
And actions like this are aimed at diminishing the role of what was the -- do you believe why did they go there.
Well I I think it was very simply to impose their set of values on.
On that the citizenry.
And in doing so.
Essentially stepping on the rights of people to -- practice -- religion and to have their consciences.
Play out in a way that is consistent with their -- when he used to run this department -- was that was a big job 20052006.
Under the Bush Administration.
Buy into that second term.
It is this the kind of thing you know based on these losses in the challenges in the court.
Can this be -- can it be amended what is your best guess about what this -- or what happens to it rather.
Well the administration chose to take away this right of religion.
With a stroke of the pen.
It could be reversed in the same way and it should be.
The Catholic church and many others deeply alarmed about this have chosen to go to court.
To demonstrate that this is not the role of government and it goes beyond the constitutional role of government.
But it's right at the heart really -- a question that we now facing as a society and that is.
Does religion continue to have a prominent role in American society I believe it should be actions like this make it clear that others do not.
But we're having a conference today really to talk about that to talk about what the roles should be and how we can preserve religious liberty and we're saying the faith community now uniting.
To fight back against actions.
This weather was a Republican or Democrat it's all the same freedom of religion is a very basic.
Part of American life and needs remains.
Just one more question here that does the court act on this because based on what you're saying here.
You don't believe the current administration's gonna reverse itself.
I think I think it's clear that -- current administration has latest position now.
The Catholic church and many many others who.
Join them both in spirit and letter.
Will challenge that and believe that it goes well beyond the role of government well beyond what government should be doing an imposing itself.
Eliminating the freedom of religion religion is a very legitimate way in which we form our own values and we need to have the right.
In this country the land of the free to actually be able to play that out it's our First Amendment right and it should be defended.
Governor appreciate your perspective especially having been in that position -- at HHS Mike Leavitt thank you for your time governor.
Thank you bill.
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