The fiscal cliff isn’t the only abyss that the Obama Administration and Congress have created for individuals and employers. The Obamacare mandate that forces employers to provide and pay for coverage of abortion-inducing drugs, contraception, and sterilization has created a cavernous void for religious liberty that will threaten the existence of many businesses in the new year.

On January 1, religious business owners whose employee health plans renew at the beginning of the year will face the impossible decision to either violate their deeply held beliefs by complying with the mandate or jump over Obamacare’s conscience cliff and face ruinous fines.

Among those employers peering over the Obamacare ledge is Hobby Lobby. On Wednesday, the Supreme Court denied a request to temporarily stop enforcement of the mandate against the family-owned business while its appeal moves forward. The company now faces the possibility of devastating penalties in 2013. It becomes subject to the anti-conscience mandate on New Year’s Day, the day on which its employee health plan renews.

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