Sotomayor Ruled in Favor of Muslim Inmate’s Ramadan Dinner But Rejected Christian Hobby Lobby’s Appeal for HHS Exemption
The Supreme Court denied a request by Hobby Lobby, a Christian-owned company, to shield the company from the controversial contraceptive mandate. Justice Sonia Sotomayor rejected a request for an emergency injunction that would have shielded employers from the mandate. Hobby Lobby could face fines of up to $1.3 million a day if they do not comply to the Obama mandate.
Yet, as Laura Ingraham pointed out, in a previous case Sotomayor ruled for a Muslim inmate who was denied Ramadan meals. In Ford v. McGinnis, 352 F.3d 582 (2d Cir. 2003), Sotomayor wrote an opinion that reversed a district court decision holding that a Muslim inmate’s First Amendment rights had not been violated because the holiday feast that he was denied was not a mandatory one in Islam. Sotomayor held that the inmate’s First Amendment’s rights were violated because the feast was subjectively important to the inmate’s practice of Islam.