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(AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)

Did the U.S. Supreme Court’s 5-4 ruling in the Hobby Lobby case open the floodgates for thousands of businesses to disregard federal mandates if they conflict with their religious views? Or was it a narrowly defined victory for Hobby Lobby and its supporters that won’t have much application beyond paying for certain contraceptives?

Depends on who you talk to. Some say the ruling won’t be easily applied beyond specific cases like Hobby Lobby’s, whose owners objected to paying for four specific birth control methods that they claim takes human life. Others argue that the ruling paves the way for a broad interpretation of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act that could lead to placing religious beliefs of company owners above much of the law.

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Dan Cook

Dan Cook is a journalist and communications consultant based in Portland, OR. During his journalism career he has been a reporter and editor for a variety of media companies, including American Lawyer Media, BusinessWeek, Newhouse Newspapers, Knight-Ridder, Time Inc., and Reuters. He specializes in health care and insurance related coverage for BenefitsPRO.

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