Date of Award

Spring 5-1-2015

Document Type

Honors Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Political Science and International Affairs

First Advisor

Cooperman, Rosalyn

Second Advisor

Kramer, Jack

Major or Concentration

Political Science


This project examines the relevant case law and the potential repercussions of the Burwell v. Hobby Lobby decision from June 2014. The ruling allowed "closely held, family corporations" to have religious freedom rights by granting Hobby Lobby an exemption to the so-called "contraception mandate" of the Affordable Care Act. This paper argues that the idea of corporate religious freedom is relatively unprecedented, and as such, it has major implications for future decisions made by the Supreme Court. The most profound (and perhaps unintended) consequence of the Burwell ruling is a new balancing act in the legal system itself: religious freedom claims made by one individual versus the identity claims of another.