James Nicholson, former ambassador to the Vatican from 2001 to 2005, thinks that many Catholics will vote for Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan in November because of their belief that President Obama has waged a war on religious freedom.
Nicholson told the Odyssey Networks, "The Catholic Church is one of the biggest providers of charitable works in our country, and now the government is saying if you want to continue to do that, you have to do it by the rules of our game, which is you have to provide to your employees that help you contraceptive services, different ways of effecting sterilization, inducing an abortion. The provider of the services does not have any choice. A lot of Catholic employers self-insure, so they're buying insurance, providing the money for these services for their employees that violate their conscience. It's also required that these things be provided to the families of employees, which could include a teenage girl who may be pregnant and want an abortion. And the abortion provider would have to provide the abortion at the expense of the employers without the parents even knowing it."
Nicholson says that the HHS mandate is unprecedented. He argues that the debate about the mandate is not about birth control, but is about freedom. "The Catholic bishops have said that, and they are absolutely right."
Nicholson also served as the U.S. secretary of veterans affairs from 2005 to 2007 and chairman of the Republican National Committee from 1997 to 2001.
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