A large portion of the Notre Dame Law School faculty are up in arms about the coercive mandate. (And I've done a few postings about this situation - here's the first one - The President's Administration launches a direct attack on Catholic - and other - Churches and conscience protection.) Several of them are leaders in rallying other lawyers and institutions to take action.
Good column here by McGurn on the WSJ op ed page today. Excerpts below, but hit the link for the whole column.
... Joe Donnelly, is a double Domer, boasting both undergraduate and law degrees from Notre Dame. He represents South Bend in Congress. Last week his Republican opponent, Richard Mourdock, used a visit to that city to declare his own support for the university's effort.
"It's ironic that a graduate of Ball State should be here defending Notre Dame when a Notre Dame graduate, my opponent Joe Donnelly, refuses to do so," said Mr. Mourdock. In response, Mr. Donnelly told the South Bend Tribune that he supports a solution and continues to "monitor the process."
When asked by this reporter for a follow-up, his spokesman emailed a statement in which Mr. Donnelly repeated his call for a solution that would exempt religious organizations, and he said that his alma mater has the "right" to go to court.
It's an indirect statement, and beyond its complaints that Mr. Mourdock is "picking a partisan fight," it goes to considerable lengths to avoid saying simply: I support Notre Dame in its suit and hope the school prevails.
That wasn't how an Obama administration was supposed to play out. It was Mr. Obama who in 2006 declared that "secularists are wrong when they ask believers to leave their religion at the door before entering into the public square." It was this same Mr. Obama whom Notre Dame lauded at its 2009 commencement for his "willingness to engage with those who disagree with him."
Now Notre Dame is effectively suing its own commencement speaker, specifically because the university found that for all its rhetoric, Mr. Obama's administration wouldn't engage.
Now, it's true that Notre Dame's current president, the Rev. John I. Jenkins, has been criticized by some conservatives who think his statement on the lawsuit doesn't go far enough. In fact, the move required courage, and Notre Dame's participation renders nonsensical the Catholic left's charge that these lawsuits are the work of Obama haters, which Father Jenkins manifestly is not. It also augurs more difficulty for Mr. Obama come November.
... let's remember that the president who promised us in 2008 that his Democratic Party would be more sympathetic to people of faith has in his cabinet a health and human services secretary who described her push for her contraceptive mandate—and like-minded initiatives—as a "war" against all who oppose it. Ask Mr. Donnelly how that's working out for candidates like him.