Last summer, Mike Huckabee helped a fast-food chicken chain break sales records with Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day. Now, the former governor of Arkansas is rallying support for Hobby Lobby.
Huckabee is asking Americans to show their support for Hobby Lobby by shopping at their local retail store or online on Saturday. As of Friday afternoon, nearly 40,000 people had RSVPed yes to the event online, started by Joe Grabowski.
“On Saturday, January 5th, all Americans who value freedom of religion and oppose the HHS Mandate's unfair impositions upon religious individuals and corporate entities are called upon to show their support for Hobby Lobby by shopping either at their local retail Hobby Lobby store or online,” the event's webpage says.
“Hobby Lobby is a respected and very successful business that is privately owned by a family who have sought to honor God in their personal lives and in their business,” Huckabee posted on his Facebook page Friday morning. “Their generosity to missions, to the relief of poverty around the world, to Christian education, and to their employees is legendary and exemplifies the kind of business principle that should be applauded and appreciated. Instead they are having to fight in court for the most basic American rights of freedom of religion and freedom of speech.”
The event comes in the wake of the arts and craft retail chain's fight against the HHS Mandate. Last month U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor refused to block enforcement of a requirement in President Barack Obama's 2010 health care overhaul that some companies provide insurance coverage for contraceptive drugs and devices.
An attorney for the Green family, who owns Oklahoma-based Hobby Lobby and sister retailer Mardel said the companies do not plan to carry insurance that covers abortion pills.
“Hobby Lobby will continue their appeal before the Tenth Circuit,” said Kyle Duncan, general counsel for The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which is representing Hobby Lobby. “The Supreme Court merely decided not to get involved in the case at this time. It left open the possibility of review after their appeal is completed in the Tenth Circuit. The company will continue to provide health insurance to all qualified employees. To remain true to their faith, it is not their intention, as a company, to pay for abortion-inducing drugs.”
Defying the federal mandate that requires companies to offer employees health coverage that includes the “morning-after” and “week-after” pills means the Greens' companies are risking potential fines of up to $1.3 million per day.
“The Hobby Lobby company has resisted the demands of the government to abandon their principles to 'comply' with dictates from the Health and Human Services Department,” Huckabee wrote on his website. “It's one more way in which an overreaching federal government seeks to violate the conscience and Constitutional rights of American citizens in the name of 'what's best for us.'
“This is not just about Hobby Lobby—this is about YOU! If Hobby Lobby is forced to eat the 'king's meat' and 'bow on their knees' to a human government in direct conflict with their fundamentals of faith, then how long will it be before they come for YOU and YOUR FAMILY?
“We will stand with them in their resistance,” he continued. “For we will either stand together or fall together. I choose to stand. What about you?
“If you support their stand, I have a way for you to show your appreciation. I noticed a grassroots event was already started on Facebook for a Hobby Lobby Appreciation Day on January 5th. I encourage you to RSVP YES by clicking the link below and then send your friends and family to www.StandwithHobbyLobby.com and ask them to join you!”