Clinton: Hobby Lobby ruling a 'slippery slope'

Hillary Clinton on Monday condemned the Supreme Court decision that found some family-owned corporations cannot be forced to pay for the birth control coverage of their employees, required by the healthcare law. 

"I think that there should be a real outcry against the decision," Clinton said at the Aspen Ideas Festival. "And there will be many more now — look, many more companies will claim religious beliefs and some will be sincere but others maybe not. And we are going to see this one insurable service cut out for many, many women."

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The 5-4 ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, applies to so-called closely held companies rather than publicly traded companies. 

The owners of Hobby Lobby, a retail crafts chain, had challenged the mandate, saying it required them to cover some forms of contraception such as the morning after pill, which they equated with abortion and opposed on religious grounds.

Clinton, a likely Democratic candidate for president in 2016, said the ruling is a slippery slope, citing portions of liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's dissent.

"You know there are companies that may be closely held by employers who don't believe in blood transfusions," she said. "That is a religious belief that certain people hold. So does that mean if you have need for a blood transfusion, your insurance policy does not have to cover it? So this is a really bad slippery slope."

The majority addressed the issue, finding no evidence that the ruling would lead to a flood of religious objections. The majority also said the decision "is concerned solely with the contraceptive mandate."

The decision hinged on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993, a law signed by former President Bill Clinton. The law prohibits the government from burdening a person's religious freedom, unless it is to further a compelling government interest and is the least restrictive method available.

"This is certainly a use that no one foresaw and Justice Ginsberg makes that very clear,” Clinton said. 

The court assumed providing contraception coverage is a compelling government interest but found there were other, less-restrictive ways to provide coverage. For example, the government could pay for coverage itself, the court found. 

"So does this mean that whoever wrote that concurrence is in favor of a single payer system for contraception?” Clinton asked. “I think there are a lot of interesting questions.”

Clinton discussed the issue of abortion, calling it a “hard choice.”

“We’re always going to argue about abortion,” she said. “It’s a hard choice and it’s controversial, and that’s why I’m pro-choice, because I want people to be able to make their own choices.”

This story was updated at 6:48 p.m.

Jesse Byrnes contributed.