Liberty Counsel grew out of Liberty University, the ultraconservative Christian school founded by Rev. Jerry Falwell; in addition to running Liberty Counsel, Staver is vice president of the university and a professor at its law school. So it’s no surprise that Liberty Counsel represented the university in its challenge to the Affordable Care Act’s requirement that employers cover contraception in their group insurance policies. Staver called the mandate a “most egregious trampling of the free exercise of religion,” and the university was the first employer to challenge it in court, back in 2010. A federal appeals court rejected the university’s suit, and the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review it. The high court’s 2014 Hobby Lobby ruling allowed some for-profit corporations to opt out of the contraceptive mandate, but its implications for religiously affiliated nonprofits like the university is unclear; after all, the federal government has already given those institutions an accommodation by having the insurer, not the employer, fund the contraceptive coverage. For some religious groups, which either consider certain types of contraception a form of abortion or others oppose contraception altogether, that accommodation isn’t good enough. Just last month Liberty Counsel filed a friend of the court brief in the challenge to the mandate by the Little Sisters of the Poor, a Catholic religious order that employs many laypeople, including non-Catholics, at the elder-care homes it runs. “Little Sisters of the Poor and many other religious, nonprofit organizations cannot and will not be complicit in killing the unborn,” Staver said.