A federal appeals court has permanently blocked a rule coming from the Biden administration’s Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) which demanded that religious doctors perform sex change surgeries in violation of their beliefs.
The eighth circuit’s decision comes months after the fifth circuit issued an opinion in August 2022 in Texas that struck down a reading of the Affordable Care Act which would require every doctor to provide sex change surgeries regardless of religious conviction. Friday’s decision affirmed this August opinion. (RELATED: POLL: Most Americans Can’t Name Freedom Of Religion As A First Amendment Right)
“We agree with these courts and therefore conclude that the district court correctly held that ‘intrusion upon the Catholic Plaintiffs’ exercise of religion is sufficient to show irreparable harm,'” the eight circuit wrote in its decision.
BREAKING: A federal appeals court has permanently blocked Biden’s Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) from forcing religious doctors to perform sex change surgeries. @DailyCaller pic.twitter.com/5gA3Vek6Fv
— Sarah Weaver 🎄 (@SarahHopeWeaver) December 9, 2022
“The federal government has no business forcing doctors to violate their consciences or perform controversial procedures that could permanently harm their patients,” Luke Goodrich, VP and senior counsel at Becket Law, who represented the plaintiffs in the case, said in a press release.
Goodrich added that the ruling would establish a precedent in favor of religious liberty for future cases involving the issue of doctors performing sex change surgeries.
“Today’s victory sets an important precedent that religious healthcare professionals are free to practice medicine in accordance with their consciences and experienced professional judgment,” Goodrich said. “The government’s attempt to force doctors to go against their consciences was bad for patients, bad for doctors, and bad for religious liberty.”
The Biden Administration can either ask the eighth circuit to rehear the case in the next 60 days or appeal to the Supreme Court in the next 90 days, according to the press release.
“I doubt the Biden Administration is going to pursue either of those avenues,” Goodrich told reporters in a press conference Friday afternoon. “Number one, these rulings were on very solid grounds, very strong rulings. It’s kinda hard to even debate that these rulings are wrong.”
“But then, secondly, we already kinda had a test run on this from the fifth circuit ruling a few months ago on the Texas case, which affirmed the same type of injunction, the Biden Administration had the same type of opportunity to seek rehearing form the fifth circuit or appeal to the US Supreme Court but it declined to do both of those. It just let the deadlines pass without further appeal, and it just let that case become final.”
The HHS did not respond to the Daily Caller’s request for comment.