Last night on Sunday Night Prime with Father Benedict Groeschel on EWTN he had Archbishop Dolan on as a guest and of course they talked about the lack of exceptions for religious institutions with the Health and Inhuman Services mandate.
One interesting piece of information is that Archbishop Dolan talked about his meeting with the President in November of 2011 after the initial ruling by HHS. He said he was given three assurances that the exemption would be opened up and specifically President Obama said that protecting the consciences of religious people was his “highest duty.” The Archbishop walked out of that meeting expecting a change.
So did President Obama lie to Archbishop Dolan’s face? Probably not and at the time I would guess he was considering expanding the exemption to some degree. Considering just how pro-abortion his administration is they were not going to let the President go “wobbly” on this. Though if the President is as Machiavellian as some people would assert, then telling an Archbishop the opposite of the truth stopped any opposition that could have been built up prior to the Feb 2012 announcement.
When the President called Archbishop Dolan the news that they were not changing a thing the Archbishop’s reaction was of course to ask him why he had flip-flopped on this. The Archbishop asked rhetorically “Do we have to get permission to follow are faith?”
This reminds me of the meetings between the New York bishop’s conference and state politicians about the then upcoming same-sex marriage laws and how they were given assurances that it would not pass.
There is a reason we pray “Put no trust in princes.”