Rick Perry

More on Gov. Rick Perry's "Apolitical" Prayer Rally

The Response, a day of prayer and fasting called by Texas Gov. Rick Perry and hosted by the American Family Association, will take place at Houston’s Reliant Stadium this Saturday. Perry has tried to deflect criticism of his sponsorship of this religiously exclusionary event by claiming (unconvincingly) that it is meant to be unifying and apolitical, even though it is sponsored by a dizzying array of divisive, bigotry-promoting individuals and groups, including those encouraging him to enter the presidential race.
 
It is true that participants recently received instructions not to wear shirts with political messages. But an email that arrived today with suggestions for daily contemplation in preparation for The Reponse sounded suspiciously like an action alert from the far-right AFA:
In Joel's day Israel experienced the destruction of a massive locust plague. The nation's economy was crippled because of the decimation of the agriculture. The reason these plagues came was because of the people's negligence to worship and serve God with their whole heart. Because the people grew cold and eventually departed from God, they experienced incredible hardships. The result of their inner departure was multiple external crises.
 
In America today we face a similar crisis. We have watched sin escalate to a proportion the nation has never seen before. We live in the first generation in which the wholesale murder of infants through abortion is not only accepted but protected by law. Homosexuality has been embraced as an alternative lifestyle. Same-sex marriage is legal in six states and Washington, D.C. Pornography is available on-demand through the internet. Biblical signs of apostasy are before our very eyes. While the United States still claims to be a nation "under God" it is obvious that we have greatly strayed from our foundations in Christianity.
 
This year we have seen a dramatic increase in tornadoes that have taken the lives of many and crippled entire cities, such as Tuscaloosa, AL & Joplin, MO. And let us not forget that we are only six years from the tragic events of hurricane Katrina, which rendered the entire Gulf Coast powerless.
 
Furthermore, because of mismanagement and greed, our national economy is in incredible disarray, with our national debt topping 14 trillion dollars. We have effectively mortgaged our children's future, while spending money we do not have on entitlements as we search in vain for "the American dream". The first "wave of locusts" has begun to descend upon us and many are oblivious to the fact that destruction has come and is still coming.
 
God destined America to be a gospel beacon to the rest of the earth a nation under God who declares His goodness, truth and mercy to a world desperately in need. How we have strayed from God's original intent for us! The crisis is extreme and the hour is urgent.

The Response email includes several days' worth of items to consider.  And while Religious Right groups like the AFA often blame secularists, homosexuals, liberals, feminists, environmentalists, and President Obama for the nation’s problems, today's email suggests the real problem is that the Church has not been fervent enough:

Often the church imagines that it is the wickedness of unbelievers that causes the deterioration of a nation. While unbelievers do contribute to a nation's moral state, Scripture is clear - God holds His people responsible for their actions and identifies their sin or obedience as the key contributor to the blessing or cursing of a nation. . . .
 
There is much at stake for the church in America. In many ways we are at a crossroads of two divergent paths. Either the church will turn to the Lord with her whole heart, sparking a great revival and reformation in our nation, or she will continue in compromise, keeping the status quo as we watch our nation turn to debauchery, sin and ultimately destruction.
 

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Joseph Farah celebrates CPAC's dumping of GOProud.
  • Get your tickets for the forthcoming anti-Palin documentary "Sarah Palin — You Betcha."
  • Rick Perry says he has "no idea what God's plans are for me, but I'm going to try to be as faithful to him as I can be" in deciding to run for president.
  • On a related note, perhaps all the talk of Perry shaking-up the GOP race is just that.
  • Finally, I can't wait to see the National Organization for Marriage maintain its anti-boycott stance and start going after the American Family Association.

Maybe Rick Perry Should Have Just Rented Out One-Tenth Of Reliant Stadium

Back in June when Gov. Rick Perry announced that he was hosting his massive "The Response" prayer rally and inviting all of the nation's governors to join him, Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback immediately announced that he would attend.  But now, with the event only three days away, it appears as if Brownback might be having second thoughts and will no longer confirm him attendance.

The event is being held at Reliant Stadium, home of the NFL's Houston Texans, which can seat 86,000 people, so obviously organizers had pretty grand plans for this event.  A spokesperson for the stadium said they were expecting 30,000-35,0000 to attend ... but with only a few days to go, the number of confirmed attendees stands at about one-tenth of the stadium's capacity

Openly and deeply religious, Texas Gov. Rick Perry organized what seemed like a slam-dunk event for a politician in a state where religion and politics walk hand in hand: He would fill Houston's Reliant Stadium with fellow believers in a seven-hour session of Christian atonement by some of the nation's most conservative preachers, exhorting believers to pray about the nation's moral decline.

Since he set up the event scheduled for Saturday, however, Perry has become the most talked-about almost-candidate in the 2012 Republican presidential field. But with only 8,000 RSVPs for a stadium that seats 71,500 people, virtually no politicians planning to attend, and a slate of organizers who hold out-of-mainstream views on religious freedom, gay rights and even Adolf Hitler, the event has become a potentially risky gamble if Perry is serious about running for the White House.

By contrast, when Lou Engle organized his "The Call" prayer rally on the National Mall in 2000, it drew an estimated 400,000 people.

Interfaith Clergy Speak Out Against Perry's Prayer Rally

Banding with the discriminatory American Family Association, advocates of the radical Seven Mountains Dominionism ideology, and a litany of anti-gay zealots and End Times preachers to put on his The Response prayer rally, Texas Gov. Rick Perry is orchestrating an event that rejects both non-Christians and Christians who don’t embrace the organizers’ far-right politics and religious fundamentalism.

Over fifty clergymen from the Houston area are questioning the appropriateness of Perry’s exclusionary prayer rally, which will be held in Houston’s Reliant Stadium this weekend, in a letter organized by the Anti-Defamation League:

One of Houston's greatest strengths is its religious diversity. As part of the Anti-Defamation League's Coalition for Mutual Respect, we are keenly sensitive to the fact that Houstonians may pray differently or not pray at all. We cherish the fact that we can pray freely in our own way, because our founding fathers wisely envisioned and provided for a nation grounded in the principle of separation of church and state. This freedom from government imposed religion allows all religions to flourish in our democratic society. It is with this thought in mind that we express our concern that Governor Rick Perry has called for a full day of exclusionary prayer on August 6, 2011. This religious event is not open to all faiths, as its statement of beliefs does not represent religious diversity.

Governor Perry has a constitutional duty to treat all Texans equally regardless of race, religion or ethnicity. His official involvement with the Response at minimum violates the spirit of that duty. By his actions, Governor Perry is expressing an official message of endorsement of one faith over all others; thereby sending an official message of religious exclusion and preference to all Texans who do not share that faith. We believe our religious freedom is threatened when a government official promotes religion, especially one religion over all others. We urge our elected leaders, who have the privilege of representing us, to practice their own religion as they choose without seeking to impose their beliefs on others or using their official offices to divide citizens along religious lines. They should be role models for all Americans, and can be by honoring and respecting our constitutional freedoms.

In June, the Houston Clergy Council released a statement decrying Perry for organizing the rally with the AFA and rebuffing “Houston’s vibrant and diverse religious landscape”:

We believe in a healthy boundary between church and state. Out of respect for the state, we believe that it should represent all citizens equally and without preference for religious or philosophical tradition. Out of respect for religious communities, we believe that they should foster faithful ways of living without favoring one political party over another. Keeping the church and state separate allows each to thrive and upholds our proud national tradition of empowering citizens to worship freely and vote conscientiously. We are concerned that our governor has crossed the line by organizing and leading a religious event rather than focusing on the people’s business in Austin.

We also express concern that the day of prayer and fasting at Reliant Stadium is not an inclusive event. As clergy leaders in the nation’s fourth largest city, we take pride in Houston’s vibrant and diverse religious landscape. Our religious communities include Bahais, Buddhists, Christians, Hindus, Jews, Muslims, Sikhs, Unitarian Universalists, and many other faith traditions. Our city is also home to committed agnostics and atheists, with whom we share common cause as fellow Houstonians. Houston has long been known as a “live and let live” city, where all are respected and welcomed. It troubles us that the governor’s prayer event is not open to everyone. In the publicized materials, the governor has made it clear that only Christians of a particular kind are welcome to pray in a certain way. We feel that such an exclusive event does not reflect the rich tapestry of our city.

Our deepest concern, however, lies in the fact that funding for this event appears to come from the American Family Association, an organization labeled a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The American Family Association and its leadership have a long track record of anti-gay speech and have actively worked to discriminate against the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community. The American Family Association and its leadership have also been stridently anti-Muslim, going so far as to question the rights of Muslim Americans to freely organize and practice their faith. We believe it is inappropriate for our governor to organize a religious event funded by a group known for its discriminatory stances.

As religious leaders, we commit to join with all Houstonians in working to make our city a better place. We will lead our communities in prayer, meditation, and spiritual practice. We ask that Rick Perry leave the ministry to us and refocus his energy on the work of governing our state.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Just 6,000 people have RSVP’d so far for Perry’s The Response.
  • A Houston judge dismissed the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s lawsuit against Perry.

Farah: United States Should "Break Up" Over Marriage Equality

WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah says that he would rather see the “break-up of the nation” than allow marriage equality for gays and lesbians anywhere in the United States. While criticizing Texas Gov. Rick Perry for saying that he believes New York has a right to decide its own marriage laws (although he supports the Federal Marriage Amendment), Farah contends that the country should dissolve itself to stop marriage equality:

My view of Perry changed from favorable but skeptical to highly unfavorable overnight this week after I read his comments to GOP donors in Aspen, Colo.

Essentially, Perry said he is just fine with New York state's decision to approve same-sex marriage.

"Our friends in New York six weeks ago passed a statute that said marriage can be between two people of the same sex," explained Perry. "And you know what? That's New York, and that's their business, and that's fine with me. That is their call. If you believe in the 10th Amendment, stay out of their business."

Of course, GOProud, the homosexual Republican group, was quick to praise Perry for his stand. I'm sure Perry is very proud of that endorsement.

What's wrong with his answer? So much it would take me more than one 750-word column to explain. But I will attempt to address his cowardly surrender of the national culture succinctly.

If America is to rediscover its greatness, citizens of all 50 states will need to rediscover the common values that brought us together as a nation in the first place – not just all go out and do our own thing, with every man doing what is right in his own eyes. The only viable alternative is, quite literally, a break-up of the nation.

What Rick Perry is advocating here is cultural surrender.



This would have been a more thoughtful response from a genuine Christian conservative from Texas: "Marriage between one man and one woman is the building block of any functional self-governing society. Abandoning a critical, time-tested, biblical institution like marriage – or redefining it according to a faddish new notion of political correctness – will have profoundly negative effects on any community, state or nation that tries it. I hope and pray New Yorkers challenge the decision by the legislature in New York because I can't believe it actually reflects their views. If we can't agree on fundamentals like marriage, the very fabric of what binds Americans together is becoming so badly frayed that we may have to consider going our separate ways."

Rick Perry Partners With Anti-Choice Extremist For Prayer Rally

Yet another radical endorser has been added to the website of Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s The Response prayer rally: Rob Schenck of Faith And Action. During the 1992 presidential campaign, Schenck was arrested along with Randall Terry “after thrusting a container with a 19-week-old fetus at presidential candidate Bill Clinton,” and four years later told President Clinton “God will hold you to account, Mr. President” for his pro-choice views. Schenk helped Terry found Operation Rescue, one of the most extreme and controversial anti-choice groups in America.

Schenk continues to work closely with other anti-choice zealots, including his brother Paul, who leads that National Pro-Life Action Center. In the 1990s, Schenck and his brother spearheaded a harassment campaign against an abortion provider in upstate New York who was later murdered by an anti-choice activist who is alleged to have had ties with the Schenck brothers.

Along with his militant anti-choice activism, Schenck has repeatedly questioned President Obama’s Christian faith and in 2006 described a deadly mining disaster in West Virginia as a punishment from God. Schenck is also a staunch opponent of gay rights. He called the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell an “attack on personal, moral, social and religious sensibilities” and criticized “militant homosexual activists” for holding an LGBT pride parade in Jerusalem, calling it an “abomination.”

Judging from Perry’s other prayer rally organizers, Schenck will fit right in.

Rick Perry's Confusing Stance On Marriage Equality And States' Rights

Earlier this summer presidential candidate Michele Bachmann raised eyebrows with her incoherent argument that she supports the Federal Marriage Amendment, which would ban same-sex marriage nationwide, while agreeing that states have a right to have their own laws on marriage under the 10th Amendment. Now, Texas governor and potential presidential candidate Rick Perry appears to be taking a similarly confusing and contradictory view on states’ rights.

When asked about New York’s new marriage equality law, Perry said it was “fine” with him because of the 10th Amendment’s protections for different state marriage laws. He was quickly praised by the gay conservative group GOProud but faced immediate criticism from social conservative activists and presidential candidate Rick Santorum.

Now, it appears that Perry is taking the Bachmann position by supporting both the sweeping and discriminatory Federal Marriage Amendment and states’ rights to have different marriage laws under the 10th Amendment. The Austin American Statesmen reports that Perry’s spokesman is now “confirming Perry's support of a federal constitutional amendment defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman”:

Kelly Shackelford, president and CEO of the conservative Liberty Institute, said he heard from concerned conservatives around the country who wanted to know what to make of Perry's remark.

"He probably could have used a much better term," Shackelford said. Shackelford, whose Plano-based group pushes for limited government and promotes Judeo-Christian values, said he has been telling callers that Perry has long favored an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would define marriage as being only between a man and a woman.



Mark Miner, a spokesman for Perry, said the governor's social conservatism remains steadfast.

Miner said people who know Perry understand that two things he feels strongly about are states' rights and the institution of traditional marriage.

"Nothing has changed with the governor's philosophy here," he said. Besides confirming Perry's support of a federal constitutional amendment defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman, Miner pointed to the governor's state record. Perry supported the Texas Defense of Marriage Act and a state constitutional amendment defining traditional marriage, Miner noted.

Perry Partners With Founder of Seven Mountains Dominionism For Prayer Rally

Texas Gov. Rick Perry has tried to distance himself from the many extreme activists he is working with to put on The Response prayer rally, like the pastor who labeled Oprah Winfrey the harbinger of the Antichrist and the self-proclaimed ‘Apostle’ who called the Statue of Liberty a “demonic idol.” But Perry is open about his ties to advocates of Seven Mountains Dominionism, an ideology which demands that fundamentalist Christians take total control over all aspects of society. Dominionism advocate Jim Garlow is directing “National Church Mobilization” for The Response and other Dominionist endorsers of The Response include Cindy Jacobs and David Barton. Even the American Family Association, which is the official host of the prayer rally, now promotes Seven Mountains Dominionism.

Today, Perry appeared on Barton’s radio show WallBuildersLive and announced that he has received support from televangelist James Robison,who is leading the effort to rally the Religious Right around a Perry campaign for the presidency (though of course the rally is “apolitical”). Perry also mentioned that he is working with Loren Cunningham and his “prayer warriors” to mobilize support for The Response.

Who is Loren Cunningham? Cunningham was one of three founders of the radical “Seven Mountains Dominionist” ideology, which he says he received directly from God:

It was August, 1975.My family and I were up in a little cabin in Colorado. And the Lord had given me that day a list of things I had never thought about before. He said "This is the way to reach America and nations for God.And {He said}, "You have to see them like classrooms or like places that were already there, and go into them with those who are already working in those areas." And I call them "mind-molders” or "spheres”. I got the word "spheres” from II Corinthians 10 where Paul speaks in the New American Standard about the "spheres” he had been called into. And with these spheres there were seven of them, and I’ll get to those in a moment. But it was a little later that day, the ranger came up, and he said, "There is a phone call for you back at the ranger’s station.” So I went back down, about 7 miles, and took the call. It was a mutual friend who said, "Bill Bright and Vonnette are in Colorado at the same time as you are. Would you and Darlene come over and meet with them? They would love to meet with you.” So we flew over to Boulder on a private plane of a friend of ours.And as we came in and greeted each other, {we were friends for quite a while}, and I was reaching for my yellow paper that I had written on the day before.And he said, "Loren, I want to show you what God has shown me!” And it was virtually the same list that God had given me the day before. Three weeks later, my wife Darlene had seen Dr. Francis Shaffer on TV and he had the same list! And so I realized that this was for the body of Christ.

I gave it for the first time in Hamburg, Germany at the big cathedral there to a group of hundreds of young people that had gathered at that time. And I said, "These are the areas that you can go into as missionaries.Here they are: First, it’s the institution set up by God first, the family. After the family was church, or the people of God. The third was the area of school, or education. The fourth was media, public communication, in all forms, printed and electronic. The fifth was what I call "celebration”, the arts, entertainment, and sports, where you celebrate within a culture. The sixth would be the whole area of the economy, which starts with innovations in science and technology, productivity, sales, and service. The whole area we often call it business but we leave out sometimes the scientific part, which actually raises the wealth of the world. Anything new, like making sand into chips for a microchip, that increases wealth in the world. And then of course prediction sales and service helps to spread the wealth. And so the last was the area of government. Now government, the Bible shows in Isaiah 33 verse 22 that there are three branches of government, so it’s all of the three branches: judicial, legislative, and executive. And then there are subgroups under all of those seven groups. And there are literally thousands upon thousands of sub-groups. But those seven can be considered like Caleb: "Give me this mountain,” and they can be a "mountain” to achieve for God.

Dominionist Johnny Enlow explains the necessity to take control over the “government mountain” in particular because “Lucifer sits at the top of this mountain”:

The Mountain of Government is perhaps the most important of the mountains because it can establish laws and decrees that affect and control every other mountain. Therefore, we find Lucifer himself entrenched on this mountain as the usurping "prince” over the nations. Whereas God’s government is established through service and humility, Satan’s government is established through manipulation and pride. Lucifer sits at the top of this mountain, where he specifically functions as the Antichrist. His role over the nations is to stir and raise up whatever would defeat the purposes of God on earth. When he is firmly entrenched in a nation, that nation will manifest the following "antichrist” distinctives.

As Perry prepares his presidential bid, his close ties to extreme brands of fundamentalism continue to emerge.

Perry: America Has "Turned Away From God"

Texas Gov. Rick Perry joined James and Shirley Dobson on Family Talk this morning to talk about his upcoming prayer rally, The Response. They were joined by Response organizers Jim Garlow and Bob McEwen. At the beginning of the program, Dobson bemoaned that America is “sliding towards moral depravity and cultural chaos” as a result of legal abortion and “homosexual propaganda” in schools. Later in the interview, Perry said that America has “turned away from God” and “is being attacked by seemingly all these different things at the same time.” The Dobsons, who are honorary co-chairs of The Response, announced on the show that they will also be leading the opening services at the prayer rally:

Perry: If there is good and strong and direct direction for people, when we’ve turned away from God and our country is being attacked by seemingly all these different things at the same time. What a time in our country’s history, just to recognize we don’t have all the answers. This is beyond us, go to God and prayer.

Dobson: I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you doing this, I’m sure Shirley does too. Tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands do because this is precisely what we need at this time.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Organizers say it has not been decided if Gov. Rick Perry will speak at his "The Response" prayer rally. Are you kidding me?
  • On a related note, FRC is hoping "The Response" will convince God to save our nation from the jeopardy that it is in with "the economic crisis, wars abroad, political and racial division at home, hardly any untouched by natural and man-made calamities, political and bureaucratic mismanagement, and most of all families and our youth under assault and in crisis."
  • Campus Crusade for Christ is changing its name to Cru.
  • Tim Pawlenty's presidential campaign is so weak that he is being dropped from presidential polls.
  • Finally, Richard Land is not happy with the prospect of having a Mormon for the president, but anything would be better than Obama.

Is Rick Perry a moderate? Perhaps, if the price is right.

Cross-Posted on the People For blog

Here at People For the American Way, we’ve spent the last several weeks marveling as Texas Gov. Rick Perry plans a blockbuster Christian prayer rally in Houston, gathering around him a remarkable collection of Religious Right extremists – from a pastor who claims that the Statue of Liberty is a “demonic idol” to a self-described “apostle” who blamed last year’s mysterious bird deaths in Arkansas on the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Perry claims the event is apolitical, but it is conveniently timed to coincide with the possible launching of his presidential bid and bolstered by groups that are dedicated to working far-right evangelical values into American politics.

Which is why we were all surprised today to find a story in The Hill titled “At second glance, Texas Gov. Rick Perry not as conservative as some think.” Really?


The evidence presented for Perry’s maverick-moderate tilt is that the governor has taken some reasonable positions on immigration reform and that he once angered Religious Right groups by requiring that all 6th grade girls in the state receive a vaccine for HPV, a sexually transmitted disease that can lead to cervical cancer.


Perry’s 2007 executive order requiring that the vaccine be offered to Texas’s sixth graders was a wonderful, progressive public health policy…but seemed a little odd coming from a far-right Texas governor. Interestingly, while the move angered Perry’s supporters on the Religious Right, it made one constituency very happy: lobbyists for Merck & Co., the pharmaceutical giant that manufactured the vaccine and stood to gain billions from the new law. The Associated Press reported at the time on the cozy relationship Merck had developed with the newly-reelected Texas governor:


Merck is bankrolling efforts to pass laws in state legislatures across the country mandating it Gardasil vaccine for girls as young as 11 or 12. It doubled its lobbying budget in Texas and has funneled money through Women in Government, an advocacy group made up of female state legislators around the country.

Details of the order were not immediately available, but the governor's office confirmed to The Associated Press that he was signing the order and he would comment Friday afternoon.

Perry has several ties to Merck and Women in Government. One of the drug company's three lobbyists in Texas is Mike Toomey, his former chief of staff. His current chief of staff's mother-in-law, Texas Republican state Rep. Dianne White Delisi, is a state director for Women in Government.

Toomey was expected to be able to woo conservative legislators concerned about the requirement stepping on parent's rights and about signaling tacit approval of sexual activity to young girls. Delisi, as head of the House public health committee, which likely would have considered legislation filed by a Democratic member, also would have helped ease conservative opposition.

Perry also received $6,000 from Merck's political action committee during his re-election campaign.

Maybe Gov. Perry just really cared about helping prevent an epidemic and helping girls in Texas receive good medical care. On the other hand, health care for Texans doesn’t seem to have been a major priority for Perry: by last year, the tenth year of his governorship, Texas ranked last in the country in terms of the percentage of the population with health insurance and the percentage of insured children.


The “Perry bucks the Religious Right for the health of young girls” story will probably continue to reappear as he continues to be lauded as the Republican Party’s last, best hope for 2012. But the full story in no way proves that Perry’s an independent-minded moderate. Instead, it offers a case study of the sometimes conflicting priorities of the Religious and Corporate Right, and a politician who tries to appease them both.

 

Perry Won't Take Responsibility For Radical Attendees At His Prayer Event

Sometimes you have to wonder if Rick Perry had any idea what he was getting into when he decided to organizer a massive public prayer rally with the bigoted American Family Association and then fill it with a bunch of Religious Right activists and self-proclaimed "prophets" and "apostles" who believe that Oprah is a forerunner to the Antichrist and the Statue of Liberty is a "demonic idol."

Because it sure seems like he doesn't have a clue at all:

Texas Gov. Rick Perry said Monday that he doesn't necessarily subscribe to the beliefs of some of the ministers coming to his prayer summit next month.

"I'm sure that through my elections in the past that there have been some groups that have endorsed me publicly, that I appreciate their endorsements, but their endorsements of me doesn't mean I endorse what they believe in or what they say," Perry said.

...

In his first discussion with reporters about some of the ministers associated with his call to pray for the nation, Perry indicated he is willing to associate with all of them even if he disagrees with some of their beliefs. He likened it to political endorsements.

"I appreciate anyone who's going to endorse me, whether it's on The Response, or whether it's on a potential run for the presidency of the United States," he said. "Just because you endorse me doesn't mean I endorse everything that you say or do."

Does he not recall what happened when John McCain accepted the endorsements of John Hagee and Rod Parsely?  He had to publicly reject them because of the radical things they had said and, in doing so, made clear that their views were "crazy and unacceptable" as well as "deeply offensive and indefensible" and stated that "there is no place for that kind of dialogue in America, and I believe that even though he endorsed me, and I didn't endorse him, the fact is that I repudiate such talk, and I reject his endorsement."

Perry, by contrast, is including Hagee in his prayer rally, along with a variety of other fringe figures who have said equally outrageous things. And Perry is more than willing to publicly stand with every one of them while claiming that he is not responsible in any way.

This is not some prayer rally being organized by some other group at which he is simply going to be an attendee; this is Rick Perry's prayer event - he conceived it, he set it in motion, and he is its public face. 

And he is therefore responsible for the types of people he chooses to associate with at his event.

Right Wing Round-Up

Rick Perry Partners With Militantly Anti-Gay Intercessors For America

Texas Gov. Rick Perry is working with yet another extreme organization ardently opposed to gay rights. The virulently anti-gay American Family Association is the host of Perry’s prayer rally, and another endorser of The Response is David Kubal of Intercessors for America, an organization which claims to helps Christians who recognize “the need for God to intervene in U.S. governmental and cultural issues” about current political and cultural issues.

Among the issues Intercessors For America focuses on include the threat of microchips implanted into humans, the so-called North American Union, and the supposed wrongdoings of the Obama Administration. Most recently, Intercessors for America asked members to be wary of the Dalai Lama’s visit to Washington, D.C.: “Pray that any occult spirits from the Dalai Lama and monks of Tibetan Buddhism will be bound and unable to bring harm to Washington, D.C. or the U.S.A. May they and those they seek to influence, or have influenced in the past, be set free from the power of darkness and come to know the light of life in Jesus Christ!”

Kubal’s Intercessors for America is also a harsh critic of gay equality and a vocal proponent of ex-gay reparative therapy. An endorser of the ex-gay group Exodus International, Intercessors For America hosted Bob Ragan, formerly of Exodus International, to give a speech on “Freedom From Homosexuality.” Furthermore, the group prayed to stop anti-bullying laws to protect LGBT and LGBT-perceived youth, warning they “can only lead to God’s judgment,” and that support for marriage equality “leads a soul to eternal damnation”:

Marriage equality in New York: By the signing of this measure into law it has opened the door by inviting the spiritually blind to walk in degradation, accepting a reduction in rank, dignity, standing, losing their honor of a sound reputation, accepting humiliation, and moral and intellectual decay which eventually leads a soul to eternal damnation unless they repent.

Ask the Heavenly Father to bind this edict from gaining acceptance in the hearts of the populace of New York. Ask the Lord to loose the power of His holy and eternal love to each of those who will turn back to God and denounce this unrighteous lifestyle.

Gay rights: Pray that this "homosexual" agenda initiated by an extremely small minority of individuals be exposed to the whole of our U.S. citizenry, and that a proper response and correction be made to this attempted corruption of our governmental principles. Ask the Lord to raise up leaders to bring this corrupt movement to a halt.

Anti-LGBT bullying: Ask God to help us to speak the truth in love to young people who are being affected by the "LGBT" lifestyle. Ask the Lord to protect those “bullied” by any corrupt government effort to promote sinful sexual practice among our youth. Ask the Lord to help our citizenry to stand courageously against these misguided “bullying” efforts which can only lead to God's judgment!

Student Non-Discrimination Act: (H.R.998 & S.555) These parallel bills both prohibit public school students from being excluded from participating in, or subject to discrimination under, any federally-assisted educational program on the basis of their actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity or that of their associates. S.555 Bill Summary & Status 112th Congress (2011 - 2012) Legal experts believe that, if passed, this bill will actually empower the homosexual community to dictate curriculum in all our schools, public and private. As a result, our schools may become a form of "indoctrination centers" for the gay lifestyle. (Contributors: Library of Congress, Capitol Hill Prayer Partners)

Greater is He that is in us than He that is in the world! Ask the Lord to forgive the sponsors of these bills for they know not what they do.

Rick Perry Ally Bickle Says Marriage Equality Is "Rooted In The Depths Of Hell"

Texas Gov. Rick Perry has turned to organizers from the International House of Prayer (IHOP) to put togetherThe Response prayer rally, of which IHOP founder Mike Bickle is an official endorser. As RWW previously reported, Bickle believes that Oprah Winfrey is the harbinger of the Antichrist who will help introduce a one-world religion based on the principles of tolerance and justice. In separate speeches at IHOP’s annual Onething conference, which have been posted on GOD TV, Bickle declared that gay rights and marriage equality are signs of the “Last Days.”

Bickle predicts that “the homosexual agenda will become so intense” that marriage will not only be “blurred and defiled” but also become a crime across the world. He also claims that “the gay marriage agenda” is “rooted in the depths of hell” and influenced by “demon spirits,” accelerating the coming of the End Times.

Paul said in the Last Days, in the Last Days they’ll depart from the faith, they’ll listen to demon spirits, and the homosexual agenda will become so intense that before the Lord returns marriage will be outlawed in various parts of the earth. It really will be. Marriage will actually be an illegal institution; they will forbid people to marry because of all the economic and social dimensions. The conflict that’s going to emerge as the homosexual agenda increases on a global level, pay attention, it’s exploding in this hour. All of these signs are happing at a historic level, most of these at the highest point of history and they’re all happening together.



I’ll tell you where this thing is going. Marriage will not only be the sanctity of marriage blurred and defiled, marriage in some parts of the earth will be outlawed. Marriage as an institution will be forbidden in parts of the earth as one of the Signs of the Times. The gay marriage agenda, which is rooted in the depths of Hell, this is not about love, this is deception.

Perry Insists His Prayer Rally Is Not A Political Event

We are starting to get the impression that Gov. Rick Perry and those organizing his massive public prayer event have not really put much thought into how it might look.

Response spokesperson Eric Bearse actually admitted that no one is vetting the endorsers of the event, to which we can only reply "well, no duh!"

And now Perry and organizers are trying to defend the event by insisting that it is entirely non-political:

Perry spoke to pastors from around the country in a conference call regarding The Response, a daylong prayer and fasting event planned for Aug 6 at Reliant Stadium.

"I know there are people, critics, that say this is just some political event," Perry said. "Well it's not that. This event is not about supporting some organization...It's going to be very simple...It's just a time to call out to god and that's it and lift Jesus’ name up on high."

Event organizers on the call stressed that the event is designed to be religious in nature. They said attendees will be encouraged not to wear political shirts or bring political signs to the event.

"This is not an issue of who's going to be our president...It absolutely has nothing to do with that at all. it's about making Jesus king...," said Jim Garlow, a California Pastor.

...

Garlow said Perry’s involvement in the event is key to its historic

"We have not seen historically a governor call other governors to a national prayer before that I'm aware of," Garlow said. "Even if only 1 or 2 other governors respond, at least this governor had the courage to ask other governors to respond. That's critical."

Perry conceded some assume there are "other motivations" behind the event. Perry is widely expected to announce whether he’s running for president soon after the event.

"I can't control that," Perry said. "We can't control that. We're just going to pray. We're just going to get on our knees and pray right there in Reliant Stadium."

Rick Perry is a sitting governor and likely presidential candidate who is partnering with an extremely powerful Religious Right political organization in order to organize a event that features a variety of Religious Right political activists, all for the purpose of seeking God's help in solving the nation's "economic, political, and military" problems.

But the event is entirely non-political.

Whatever.

And frankly, the political nature of Perry's event is really the least of his problems.

Rick Perry Ally John Benefiel Renamed Capital "District Of Christ"

John Benefiel, the head of the Heartland Apostolic Reformation Network and one of the official endorsers of Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s The Response prayer rally, says that Washington D.C. is under a curse from God because the Founders named it in honor of the goddess Columbia. Benefiel, who calls the Statue of Liberty a “demonic idol” and homosexuality an Illuminati plot, blames the country’s political problems on the District of Columbia’s supposedly pagan foundations.

In an August 2010 sermon, Benefiel claimed to have the “spiritual authority” to “divorce Baal” from Washington and said that he had “renamed the District of Columbia the District of Christ.” He explained: “I tell you I have more authority than the U.S. Congress does, see I guarantee you that that will not forever be called the District of Columbia, it will be changed by somebody, it will be changed by the Lord when He comes back or our Congress.”

But Gov. Perry isn’t Benefiel’s only powerful political connection. In a speech before the 2010 election, he said that Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin, who was one of the most conservative members of Congress prior to her election as governor, is one of his followers who he led “into the baptism of the Holy Spirit.” Benefiel goes on to say that Oklahoma’s Republican Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb, Attorney General E. Scott Pruitt and House Speaker Kris Steele had all “come to us for prayer”:

Maddow Shines Light On Perry's Extreme Prayer Rally Endorsers

Last night Rachel Maddow looked into the radical views of the preachers and activists that Texas Gov. Rick Perry is partnering with to put on his The Response prayer rally. Utilizing research from People For the American Way’s Right Wing Watch, Maddow featured video of Mike Bickle, John Hagee, Bryan Fischer, Cindy Jacobs, John Benefiel and C. Peter Wagner, and discussed Perry’s attempts to win support from the Religious Right as he weighs a run for the presidency.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Rick Perry Partner John Benefiel Claims Homosexuality Is An Illuminati Conspiracy

Earlier today we posted video of “Apostle” John Benefiel, an official endorser of Rick Perry’s The Response prayer rally, arguing that the Statue of Liberty is a “demonic idol” used for pagan worship. In the same sermon, Benefiel claims that homosexuality is a plot by the Illuminati to “control the population.” He says that the Illuminati intend to reduce the world population to just 500 million people and that, along with the recently passed health care reform law, the secretive group will use homosexuality as a “perverted way” to bring about “a death culture” and population control.

Benefiel also insists that homosexuality is a “stronghold” of the “demon god” Baal.

Watch:

Homosexuality was and is one of [Baal’s] big strongholds. Now we’re not against homosexuals, but we are against homosexuality because the Bible very—clearly God says ‘I hate it, don’t do it.’ By the way, homosexuality is a great way to control the population. Do you understand? I’m serious about this and I’ve seen this in lots of places, that the entity that we call the Illuminati which is really over, above Free Masonry, has stated it as their goal…to limit the world population to no more than 500 million. Do you realize that means getting rid of all of us? Because there’s between 6 and 7 billion people in the world today, and to get from 6 to 7 billion down to 500 million you gonna have to kill a lot of people off. What do you think the health care bill is? Oh yes, it’s a death culture. What about homosexuality, that’s a great way to limit the population. It’s not a great way it’s a perverted way, isn’t it.
Syndicate content

Rick Perry Posts Archive

Josh Glasstetter, Tuesday 12/06/2011, 2:53pm
“Strict constructionism,” whatever that means, was a hot topic at Saturday’s GOP presidential forum on Fox News. Mitt Romney and Rick Perry took pains to show that they would be very strict about their constructionism. Channeling George W. Bush, they heartily endorsed the rulings of Roberts and Alito and spoke out against judges who supposedly “legislate from the bench.”   Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli kicked things off by asking Perry, “What does the term ‘strict constructionist’ mean to you and would that be the standard for... MORE >
Josh Glasstetter, Monday 12/05/2011, 3:15pm
The issues of border security and illegal immigration are incredibly complex and directly affect tens of millions of Americans – not to mention the 11 million undocumented immigrants who are estimated to be living in the United States. In other words, these are issues that call for some level of nuance. Nuance, however, isn’t something that Governor Rick Perry and Rep. Michele Bachmann do:   When asked about border security by Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, Perry responded: I have made the commitment that 12 months after being inaugurated as president, that... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Saturday 12/03/2011, 9:40pm
Texas Gov. Rick Perry during Mike Huckabee's presidential candidate forum demanded that Supreme Court justices have term limits because of decisions he finds "offensive" regarding organized prayer and the placement of the Ten Commandments on government grounds. He said that Justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito are his models for the courts because they were "strict constructionists." When asked what strict constructionism means in layman's terms, he pulled out the Constitution, holding it upside down, and argued that the current Justices have strayed from it by using the... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Friday 12/02/2011, 3:38pm
Rick Perry wants it known that he is not ashamed to talk about his faith ... and so he's released a new ad letting everyone know exactly that: When you run for president, you get a bunch of questions about your faith. People want to know what drives you--how you make decisions. Now some liberals say that faith is a sign of weakness. Well, they're wrong. I think we all need God's help. America's greatest leaders have been people of strong faith, of strong values. That makes for a strong America. I'm Rick Perry. I'm not ashamed to talk about my faith. And I approve of this message. Gee,... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Monday 11/14/2011, 12:15pm
The day after Governor Rick Perry’s devastating debate flub on Wednesday’s CNBC debate, when he forgot one of the three government agencies he had pledged to cut, Texas First Lady Anita Perry appeared on American Family Radio to do damage control. She stressed that the CNBC debate was only his sixth and claimed that the debates were unfair to Perry because “there were people on that stage that have been on the national debate stage for six years, some have been running for president for six years, some have run for president before” and “of the eight candidates... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 11/14/2011, 9:56am
Last week, Gov. Rick Perry made presidential debate history and national news when he struggled for nearly a minute to list the names of the three federal agencies that he would immediately eliminate if elected president before eventually admitting that he couldn't remember the third one and giving up. Today, Gary Bauer's Campaign For Working Families has come rushing to Perrys' defense with a video called "53 Seconds That Should End A Presidency" that features various clips of President Obama hesitating, stumbling over his words, and misspeaking ... as if that is somehow even... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Friday 11/11/2011, 12:35pm
After Rick Perry jumped into the presidential race, the Texas governor quickly took the lead among Republican voters nationwide and in surveys in critical states like Iowa and South Carolina. Analysts reasonably predicted that the nomination would come down to a choice between Perry and Mitt Romney as other candidates like Michele Bachmann fizzled and Tim Pawlenty dropped out. Perry, who announced his candidacy following his The Response prayer rally, courted and won plaudits from Religious Right luminaries including James Dobson, Tony Perkins, Richard Land, David Barton, Don Wildmon, David... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Thursday 10/27/2011, 4:38pm
Rick Santorum goes after Herman Cain on the issue of abortion and using quotes from various Religious Right leaders to drive home the point.   The Rick Perry campaign has hit upon a novel possible solution to addressing the candidate's poor debate performances: skipping future debates.   Quran-burning pastor Terry Jones is running for president.   FRC's latest prayer target: "Pray that DOMA will be preserved! May the people elect a President and Congress next November who will pass, and may the states ratify a Federal Marriage... MORE >