Religious Freedom Restoration Act
A term to know.
The Religious Freedom Restoration Act, Pub. L. 103-141, 107 Stat. 1488 (November 16, 1993), is codified at 42 U.S.C. § 2000bb through 42 U.S.C. § 2000bb-4. RFRA "ensures that interests in religious freedom are protected." The bill was introduced by Congressman Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on March 11, 1993. A companion bill was introduced in the Senate by Ted Kennedy (D-MA) the same day. A unanimous U.S. House and a nearly unanimous U.S. Senate (all but three) passed the bill, and President Bill Clinton signed it into law.
The RFRA, as applied to states, was held unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court in City of Boerne v. Flores. However, it is constitutional as applied to the federal government; see for example, Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. As a result of the former case, twenty individual states have passed State Religious Freedom Restoration Acts that apply to state governments and local municipalities.