Activism

The Fracturing Right

If one was looking for an example of just how fractured and confused those on the Right are as they attempt to decide which Republican presidential candidate to support, one wouldn’t find a better example than this article from CNS News.    

As it stands now, the Right is so desperately lost that the Catholic League’s Bill Donohue, of all people, is touting Rudy Giuliani and pushing anti-abortion voters not to be ideological purists:

But it is Giuliani's commitment to appoint "strict constructionists" to the U.S. Supreme Court that should matter most to Christian activists, Donohue said.

"Social conservatives are going into this campaign with some degree of reservation, if not trepidation," he acknowledged. "But when push comes to shove, there is a day and night difference" between the three leading GOP contenders and their Democratic counterparts, he added.

"The problem with the pro-life movement is that some people are purist, and as far as I'm concerned, they're detrimental to the cause," Donohue said. "It's important to be principled, but it's also important to be prudential."

While Donohue singles out Giuliani’s pledge to appoint "strict constructionists" to the Supreme Court as the candidate’s top credential, other candidates -- Mitt Romney, John McCain, and Mike Huckabee – have all stated that, if elected, they would nominate judges like Roberts, Alito, and Scalia.

It is somewhat surprising that Donohue hangs so much on this Giuliani claim, considering that his judicial appointment history has not been particularly reassuring to the Right.

But at least Giuliani has someone out there championing his campaign – the best John McCain could get in the article was a quote from Janice Crouse of Concerned Woman for America saying he’s “never been popular with any branch of conservatism” and that it “may be too late for him to prove himself.” 

As for Romney:

Jordan Sekulow, a law student who works as a consultant on Romney's campaign, said prospective voters should look at his record as governor of Massachusetts, where he closed a $3 billion budget gap during his first year in office by eliminating waste and streamlining government.

Romney was willing to confront the judicial activism of the Massachusetts Supreme Court, which ruled in favor of same-sex "marriage," Sekulow added.

Sekulow.jpgIf the name “Jordan Sekulow” seems familiar, that is probably because he is not just some ordinary “law student” – he was the national chairman of “Students for Bush” in 2004 and is the Deputy Director of Government Affairs at the American Center for Law and Justice, which just so happens to be the organization headed by his father, Jay Sekulow, who is himself an advisor to the Romney campaign.

But while Romney may have the support of the Sekulow family sown up, he’s going to have a hard time winning over Donohue:

Donohue also said there is good cause "not to trust" Romney, since he "made it clear to everyone in Massachusetts" during earlier campaigns that he was an abortion-rights supporter.

Apparently Donohue doesn’t think Giuliani has that sort of problem at all.

Clint Bolick Urges 'Judicial Activism' against 'Big Government'

In WSJ op-ed (temp link).

Minuteman Founder on Georgia Candidate: 'He's One of Us'

Although he had never held office before, when Bill Greene decided to run to replace Rep. Charlie Norwood (R-Georgia), who died last month, he knew he would have at least two advantages: a ready audience of activists and donors from the mailing list of RightMarch.com, the Internet marketing tool he built, and support from some of the right-wing leaders whose missives he has enthusiastically distributed. And so in February Greene announced his candidacy to his “over one million supporters nationally” as an extension of the grassroots activism he has encouraged in the past:

Now, we have the chance to make YOUR voice -- the voice of grassroots, hard-working patriotic Americans -- heard even LOUDER...

... From the INSIDE of Congress!

Yesterday, I announced my candidacy as a Republican Candidate for Georgia's 10th Congressional District.

And this week, Greene passed along an endorsement from Chris Simcox, president of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, who wrote that electing Greene is “a chance to finally make progress” on “keep[ing] our neighborhoods safe from drug dealers, rapists and potential terrorists.”

·  Bill has been a leader in the fight against illegal immigration as a grassroots activist, delivering millions of messages to Capitol Hill from constituents, demanding NO AMNESTY for illegals;

·  He has personally mustered with us on the U.S.-Mexican border as a volunteer with the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, standing watch to report the illegals streaming unhindered across our officially undefended Arizona border;

Most importantly, given Simcox’s many problems with finances,

· Bill has helped us to raise tens of thousands of dollars for MCDC operations and projects, such as the Border Fence Project;

According to Simcox, Greene, who cut his political teeth working for GOP direct-mail guru Richard Viguerie, “has to have the financial firepower to blanket the local radio and television markets with a barrage of ads, as well as the ability to field an army of volunteers led by experienced staffers who know how to get out the vote. Add in the print ads and direct mail efforts to communicate with every likely voter in one of the largest districts in Georgia, and you’ll see why the Bill Greene campaign is facing HUGE expenses.”

Top Military Leader’s Stand against Gay Servicemembers Draws Cheers from Religious Right, Brownback

After the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff told the Chicago Tribune that his support for barring gays and lesbians from openly serving in the armed forces was based on his belief, from his “upbringing,” that homosexuality is “immoral” and analogous to adultery, supporters of equality for gays were quick to criticize the nation’s top military officer for his prejudice-based promotion of public policy and for sending an inappropriate message to gays currently serving under his command. Not surprisingly, the Religious Right has come to the defense of Gen. Peter Pace, who has refused to apologize, and ambitious politicians are not far behind.

Concerned Women for America’s Matt Barber wrote that Pace “is to be commended for publicly expressing the common sense values shared by the majority of Americans, for having the courage to face down America’s self-appointed thought police and for his bold attempt to reign in our nation’s political correctness run amok.” Family Research Council President Tony Perkins declared that “Gen. Pace's job is not to be politically correct but to protect the nation and the well-being of our soldiers.” Rob Schenck of the National Clergy Council said his group will “ask President Bush to support General Pace's right to stand by his convictions as he enforces the military code of conduct.” And Phil Magnan, director of a group called Biblical Family Advocates, issues a press release attacking gays as “licentious”:

"If there is any apologizing that needs to be done, it's by homosexual advocates who have drawn millions of young people, including soldiers into a destructive, immoral and unhealthy lifestyle."

"The homosexual community has sold the public their licentious lifestyle in the name of tolerance and freedom when they should be seeking to be freed from it. Ask the person dying from HIV if it was worth having hundreds of partners or if some of the millions who are enslaved to it would like to be free of it."

Others claimed that criticism of Pace was “clearly an effort to purge from authority anyone who dares represent the most basic tenets of a Judeo-Christian moral code,” as WorldNetDaily.com editor Joseph Farah put it. Peter LaBarbera of Americans for Truth said of Pace critics, “Their idea of civil rights is that we can’t voice our moral beliefs about homosexuality. … If you say that homosexuality is wrong, they come after you; and, ultimately, we have to believe that they are going to want to ban [speaking out against] it, just like is happening in Canada, and England, and other countries.” The American Family Association is asking its supporters to send a letter to President Bush in support of Pace and in opposition to gays serving in the military: “I strongly oppose homosexual activists who want to force the military to approve their immoral lifestyle,” reads the letter template.

Already, one Republican presidential candidate struggling to gain momentum and distinguish himself among the Right has taken on the Pace cause. Sen. Sam Brownback circulated a letter in which he characterizes Pace’s justification of the military’s anti-gay policy as merely the expression of “his personal moral views.”

The moral behavior of members of the Armed Forces is of the highest importance, particularly during this time of war. The question is whether personal moral beliefs should disqualify an individual from positions of leadership in the U.S. military? We think not.

CPAC: Judiciary Activists Attack 'Undermedicated, Psychotic Lefties'

While yesterday’s segment at CPAC devoted to judicial nominees – featuring Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pennsylvania), who can count few fans at the event – was sparsely attended, even fewer showed up for today’s panel discussion on “judicial activism” instead of joining the crowds for Mike Huckabee and Wayne LaPierre of the NRA down the hall. Still, Jan LaRue of Concerned Women for America, Tom Fitton of Judicial Watch, and a man named Gary Kreep of the United States Justice Foundation did their best to keep the attention of the handful of conference-goers on the subject that was one of the most vigorously touted at last year’s CPAC.

The enemies remained the same: judges who “legislate from the bench” and believe in a “living Constitution” which they “write … at will,” and senators who opposed some of Bush’s extreme nominations or who participated in the “Gang of 14” deal that halted the march toward the “nuclear option,” which would have forced through a rule change eliminating filibusters on those nominations. Fitton said of the filibustered nominees that “liberals thought they were too conservative, and yes, too Christian.” LaRue described as “undermedicated” and “psychotic” Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee, along with groups like People For the American Way that opposed confirmation of John Roberts and Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court.

The judicial heroes were also familiar: Roberts and Alito, whose successful appointment LaRue called the “biggest grassroots victory” in years; Justice Clarence Thomas, whom Fitton described as a model for “humble judges” who “restrain themselves.” In addition, Kreep singled out Janice Rogers Brown, perhaps the most radical of Bush’s appellate nominees, for her success in getting on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. According to Kreep, Brown was targeted because of her race by the Democratic Party, “one of the most racist” groups in country, which he said opposes any minority who doesn’t “kiss their tuckuses” and “say ‘yessa massa.’”

Focus on Family Holds Conference of State Family Policy Council Franchises

“[S]trengthening the nation's social fabric through grassroots activism.”

In Colorado, Big Money on Anti-Gay Initiatives Leaves New Religious-Right Group in Wake

Focus on the Family has been a key player in the passage of constitutional amendments to ban same-sex marriage in a number of states, but when it came to its home state of Colorado, the group (and its affiliate, Focus on the Family Action) pulled out all the stops, spending over $900,000 last year to oppose a domestic partnership initiative and pass a separate amendment banning gay marriage. Most of the money went through two groups that Focus helped to create, Coloradans for Marriage and Colorado Family Action.

Now, after the defeat of the partnerships initiative and the passage of the marriage ban, at least one of the front groups is trying to establish a permanent presence in the state as a satellite “family policy council.”

Now Colorado Family Action is getting money from other sources, said President and CEO Jim Pfaff, but he wouldn’t identify them. Organizers have formed the Colorado Family Institute, a related nonprofit that’s one of 37 state Family Policy Councils allied with Focus on the Family.

Pfaff, a former staffer at Focus, outlined an agenda that spans the familiar touchstones of the Religious Right: “protecting life from conception until natural death, protecting religious liberty, working to point out examples of judicial activism and help define the proper role of the courts, and upholding the principle that parents are the primary educators of their children.” It remains to be seen whether the group will have much of a half-life beyond the high-profile fight against domestic partnerships and the substantial financial support from Focus on the Family that went with it.

The Right’s Gloomy 2007 Forecast

The National Review asked a few right-wing political figures to try and come up with some things that the Right “can be optimistic about going into 2007.”  Not surprisingly, the responses are not particularly uplifting. 

Aside from taking some glee in the fact that “the American people will now hold [the Democrats] partly responsible for Iraq policy” and getting to watch “the spectacle of liberal congressional Democrats struggling to reconcile what they want to do (impeach George Bush, raise taxes, get out of Iraq, fling wide the gates to all immigrants) with what the public wants them to do,” those queried didn't really have anything positive to offer.  

Rep. Jeb Henlsarling takes some solace in the fact that the GOP might now get a chance to the things they failed to do for the last six years, such as “embrace the core conservative principles of a balanced budget, limited, accountable government, and traditional values” while Phyllis Schlafly looks forward to re-claiming the party “by outnumbering and outsmarting the false prophets of RINO politics, nation-building utopians, and globalism economics.”   

Perhaps the most pessimistic response came from defeated Senator Rick Santorum who appeared to be so despondent that he could barely muster a few vague platitudes about making “judicial activism” a bigger issue – and even that was overshadowed by his own apparent sense of hopelessness:

Conservatism, of course, will never be the political disposition of a majority of Americans. Conservative objectives, however, will from time to time find the support of such a majority; the success of the conservative movement depends in large part on leaders taking advantage of such moments.

So that is what conservatives have to look forward to in 2007:  Hoping the Democrats struggle while waiting for opportunities where they can take advantage of those rare occasions when the American people might fleetingly support some isolated part of their right-wing agenda.  

Violent Video Game Caps Long Career of Moral Crusader

It's finally here! Just in time for holiday gift-giving,” advertises the web site of the wildly-bestselling “Left Behind” series of novels of the end times. The “It” is a new video game, based on the books, called “Left Behind: Eternal Forces,” in which players compete with the Antichrist and his United Nations peacekeeping force by battling their way through photorealistic New York City and either converting or killing those they encounter.

Action from 'Left Behind'

According to Left Behind Games’ Gary Bauman, his company licensed the concept from Tyndale House, the publisher of the books, and the authors have been “supportive” of their work. Indeed, this represents a new medium for the ideas of Tim LaHaye, who co-authored the books with Jerry Jenkins (a successful ghostwriter and former writer for the “Gil Thorp” comic strip) and provided the theological substance.

American Family Association Calls for Wal-Mart Boycott Next Weekend

Claiming retailer an “advocate for the homosexual agenda.” Operation Rescue also calls for post-Thanksgiving boycott.

Armey’s Continuing Assault

It took James Dobson of Focus on the Family weeks to finally fight back against former Congressman Dick Armey’s attacks on him – but it only took Armey one day to respond.  

For some time now, Armey has been leveling allegations that “Dobson and his gang of thugs are real nasty bullies” who rely on “demagoguery” to manipulate the “intellectually lazy” and accusations that Dobson is a power-hungry egomaniac, to which Dobson finally replied by calling Armey a sell out for working with the ACLU and dismissing him has a non-entity who is merely seeking to make a name for himself.

This time around, Armey wasted no time in attacking Dobson, belittling him for insinuating last year that the cartoon character SpongeBob SquarePants was gay

Having read Jim Dobson’s latest lecture, I feel a little bit like SpongeBob SquarePants: maligned and misunderstood. But it would be unfair, I think, to suggest that SpongeBob has become bitter over his experience with Jim Dobson; he seems to have moved on.

Frankly, though, I don’t understand why Jim Dobson always feels the need to justify himself in such great detail. If he believes that Dick Armey is the only person who thinks he is a bully, it should be of little concern to him. On some issues, regarding interactions between us, his recollections are clearly different than mine. It seems, therefore, that Jim Dobson is no more willing to believe himself a bully than I am able to believe he is a gentle soul.

Armey then recounts several instances where Dobson has threatened the Republican Party with electoral repercussions if it did not deliver on the so-called “values voters” agenda before laying into him for trying to use the GOP to push his right-wing agenda

Right Wing Reacts Quickly to New Jersey Marriage Decision

Today the New Jersey State Supreme Court unanimously ruled that, according to the state’s constitution, same-sex couples cannot be denied the rights and benefits of marriage. While a majority stopped short of specifically granting the right to marry to same-sex couples, the court ordered the legislature to extend the same rights, whether through marriage or another institution.

“The New Jersey Supreme Court has blatantly and arrogantly ordered the state Legislature to rip up what marriage has meant for thousands of years,” said James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family. “The justices have made clear their disdain and disrespect for the true decision makers in our democracy -- the people -- as well as for the institution of marriage.” He added: “Nothing less than the future of the American family hangs in the balance if we allow one-man, one- woman marriage to be redefined out of existence. And, make no mistake, that is precisely the outcome the New Jersey Supreme Court is aiming for with this decision.”

“This is a textbook example of agenda-driven judges who are willing to twist their state laws and invade the province of the legislative branch in order to force same-sex 'marriage' on the people of New Jersey,” said Jan LaRue, chief counsel for Concerned Women for America. CWA President Wendy Wright added, “The New Jersey Supreme Court has distinguished itself once again for imposing its own form of discrimination by arrogantly declaring that a woman is not needed to make a marriage, or that a man is not.”

“This is nothing more than an act of veiled judicial activism,” said Family Research Council President Tony Perkins. “As in Massachusetts and Vermont, the New Jersey Supreme Court has acted as a super-legislature imposing their will on the people of New Jersey. He called on the legislature to “ignore this ruling.” Dobson, Perkins, and Wright also said that the ruling should give impetus for voters in the 8 states with ballot initiatives regarding same-sex marriage.

Radio-talker Mark Levin, author of the anti-Supreme Court book “Men in Black,” asserted that the ruling was “as political as any I've seen.” “New Jersey joins Massachusetts in transitioning away from democratic government,” intoned Hugh Hewitt. Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kansas) quickly called for the passage of an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to ban same-sex marriage, perhaps hoping to be the first member of Congress to do so.

Some struck a positive note. “This is a plus for those of us who have been pressing for a constitutional amendment that would limit marriage to a union between a man and a woman,” said Bill Donohue of the Catholic League, explaining that he meant the case is “a wakeup call to the vast majority of Americans who are opposed to gay marriage but are reluctant to access the constitutional amendment process as the right remedy.”

Alliance Defense Fund Senior Counsel Glen Lavy also called it a “wake-up call for people who believe that marriage doesn’t need constitutional protection.” According to Lavy, the court’s declining to require marriage over civil unions should be interpreted as “mak[ing] marriage meaningless” because it is characterized as “just another option along with other ‘unions.’”

Expect more tomorrow.

Brownback Filibusters Judicial Nominee Over Suspected 'Judicial Activism'

Kansas senator places hold citing judge’s participation in a commitment ceremony for lesbian couple. See Brownback’s previous statement on judicial nominees.

Commitment Ceremony Stalls Judicial Nominee

The Right has been pretty vocal recently, demanding that Republicans in the Senate hurry up and confirm as many judges as possible before the November election.  But when it comes to the nomination of Janet Neff, they are urging them to slow down

A judge's elevation to the federal bench could be derailed because she helped preside over a commitment ceremony for a lesbian couple four years ago.

Republican Sen. Sam Brownback of Kansas has placed a hold on the nomination of Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Janet T. Neff, saying her presence at the 2002 Massachusetts ceremony raises questions about her judicial philosophy.

"It seems to speak about her view of judicial activism," Brownback said Friday. "It's something I want to inquire of her further."

Brownback, a vehement opponent of gay marriage who has presidential ambitions, said he wants to know whether Neff might have presided over "an illegal marriage ceremony" that skirted Massachusetts law. He has asked the Justice Department for a formal legal opinion on Neff's conduct.

Ceremonies marking the union of same-sex couples are usually symbolic events that carry no legal benefits and require no government approval. Massachusetts did not recognize gay marriages in 2002 but legalized same-sex marriage two years later after a ruling from its highest court.

Conservative activists expressed concerns about Neff after seeing her name in a September 2002 New York Times "Weddings/Celebrations" announcement. It said Neff led the commitment ceremony for Karen Adelman and Mary Curtin with the Rev. Kelly A. Gallagher, a minister of the United Church of Christ.

Both women are former employees of the gay rights group Human Rights Campaign in Washington.

"When she did the commitment ceremony, she was doing it in her role as a judge, and that draws up a serious question," said Tom McClusky, a spokesman for the Family Research Council, a conservative group. "She would be more sympathetic to an activist on the issue of homosexual marriage."

The FRC’s claim that her presiding over such a ceremony  “draws up a serious question” is pretty ironic considering that they didn’t seem particularly concerned when William Pryor appeared in his capacity as Attorney General of Alabama to praise then Alabama Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore for his illegal display of the Ten Commandments, proclaiming

"God has chosen, through his son Jesus Christ, this time, this place for all Christians Protestants, Catholics and Orthodox to save our country and save our courts."

Or when, again in his capacity as Attorney General, he called Roe v. Wade “the worst abomination of constitutional law in our history” or said “I will never forget Jan. 22, 1973, the day seven members of our highest court ripped the Constitution and ripped out the life of millions of unborn children.” 

According to the Right, calling a long-established Supreme Court precedent an “abomination” was no cause for concern about Pryor’s impartiality, and anyone who dared question it was accused of anti-Catholic bigotry.  But Neff’s presiding over a commitment ceremony is enough to stall her nomination and raise all sorts of “serious questions” about “judicial activism.”   

Warning: Gays To Invade PTA Meetings

Focus on the Family reports that – horror of horrors – gay parents are being encouraged to play an active role in their child’s school and education

Gay-activist group Family Pride has produced a pamphlet to guide homosexual parents in introducing themselves to their children's schools.

"Building Family Equality in the Classroom" suggests parents attend the first PTA meeting together and introduce themselves as a couple.

Barbara McPherson, legislative affairs coordinator for the California Family Council, told Family News in Focus such activism doesn't belong in school.

"It's a crossing of the line almost between information that helps people understand tolerance within their community versus an indoctrination," she said, "trying to get other people's children to think that same-sex partners are normal."

The pamphlet at issue has the audacity to suggest that gay parents meet the school principal, get involved in the PTA, understand the curricula, and volunteer to help out with the school’s clubs, groups or activities – which seems like something Focus on the Family would support

It's critically important today that parents be a part of public education in their community, especially if their children are attending a local public school.

This is only “critically important,” apparently, if said parents are not gay. 

If they are gay, then they had better not attend a PTA meeting or meet the principal unless they want to be accused of nefariously trying to indoctrinate other people’s children.   

Right Still Trying to Pick A Fight Over Judges

It is not very often that right-wing interest groups write to Republican senators, urging them to push for the confirmation of a handful of judges for crassly partisan reasons.  

Well, actually, that probably happens all the time. 

But it is unusual when they then post the letter for the entire world to see, as the Committee for Justice recently did

With the election less than eight weeks away, Thursday's vote is crucial. It is the last opportunity to get nominees onto the floor in time for a pre-election confirmation fight that would focus voters’ minds on the federal judiciary as the canonical example of the difference between the two parties. This is the time to remind voters that it is the Republicans that put constitutionalist judges on the federal courts and the Democrats who are responsible for an activist judiciary that protected online pornography, restricted the death penalty, weakened private property rights, struck down the federal ban on partial birth abortion, declared the Pledge of Allegiance to be unconstitutional, and otherwise drove religion from the public square. Can the constitutional protection of gay marriage be far behind if Democrats have their way with the federal judiciary?

Many of you ran and won in 2002 and 2004 because, in part, you promised to support the President’s judicial nominees and to end obstruction by the minority Democrats. Maybe some of your colleagues who last ran in 2000 do not realize that things have changed. Perhaps you should consider those candidates running in 2006 who are not yet in your meetings but could use the judges issue to their advantage, if only you will tee it up for them.

Voting the circuit court nominees out of committee on Thursday, thus setting the stage for an up or down vote on the Senate floor, is truly a no-lose proposition. If Democrats do little to obstruct a confirmation vote, Republicans senators can claim credit for improving the judiciary. However, if Democrats filibuster or otherwise stand in the way of a vote, it will be clear to the public which party is the party of the obstruction and which party is trying to end judicial activism. Do not worry about whether Republicans have the votes to win the confirmation battle. The goal is to remind the American people of what is at stake when they vote on November 7.

Since the confirmation of Justice Alito in January, Republican senators have missed various opportunities to keep the judges issue on voters’ minds. As a result, Senate Democrats have barely had to lift a finger to accomplish their goal of blocking the President’s conservative nominees. Fortunately, it is not too late to make the Democrats pay a price for their obstruction and to use the judges issue and judge-related issues to Republicans’ advantage in the upcoming election.

One of the nominees in question is  reportedly being opposed by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham and Sen. Arlen Specter admits that others are “embroiled in a controversy” and have “problems.”  This includes opposition by major police organizations and high-ranking career military leaders.  Presumably, CFJ is urging  that  senators “not worry about whether Republicans have the votes to win the confirmation battle” because there is a very real likelihood that they don’t actually have the necessary votes.  

But never let it be said that the Right will let facts or reality dissuade them from their desire to create bogus battles for purely partisan gain.  

Unable to Find Votes, Right Looks to Court Stripping

As the House is set to vote on a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage—even after the amendment failed to get a simple majority in the Senate, much less the required two-thirds majority—Rod Parsley’s Center for Moral Clarity reminds us that the point is politics and the upcoming elections.

“This important House vote will put every member of Congress on record as either supporting biblical marriage or siding with activist judges and others who would expand the definition of marriage," said Pastor Rod Parsley, founder and president of the Center for Moral Clarity. "Undoubtedly, many members of Congress would prefer not to cast this vote so close to an election – but it’s important that voters know where they stand on this critical issue."

But others are looking to unconstitutional tricks to get around the amendment process. The goal of “court-stripping” legislation is to simply declare that federal courts are no longer allowed to hear the claims of citizens that their rights are violated. Family Research Council President Tony Perkins--decrying the “judicial activism” behind the Supreme Court decision finding unconstitutional Bush's military commissions to try Guantanamo detainees--encourages court-stripping, along with right-wing judicial nominees, as a long-term strategy, citing two court-stripping bills in the works:

Congress needs to resist this judicial activism. One way to constitutionally check the courts is with measures like the Pledge Protection Act sponsored by Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) and another way is Cong. John Hostettler's (R-IN) Public Expression of Religion Act (PERA). Finally, we can give a fair up or down vote to judicial nominees like William J. Haynes.

Now, even as the House vote on the anti-gay marriage amendment looks to fail, Human Events endorses a court-stripping bill to circumvent the Constitution on the issue of marriage:

Unfortunately, the [marriage] amendment failed in the Senate last month, receiving only 49 votes. It is also destined to fail in the House: In the last Congress, it received only 227 votes, more than 60 shy of the super-majority needed. But there is a way Congress can act this year to protect state marriage laws from activist liberal judges. Rep. John Hostettler (R.-Ind.) has proposed a bill that would strip all federal courts, including the Supreme Court, of jurisdiction to hear any challenge to the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). …

Hostettler’s Marriage Protection Act has practical and political advantages. For starters, unlike the constitutional amendment, if pushed by the Republican leadership, it has a real chance of becoming law. … Secondly, it is a tougher political test for Democratic congressmen trying to convince voters they are not out of touch with traditional American values. … Precisely because the Marriage Protection Act can become law, Democratic leaders are fretful of letting even Red State Members vote for it--if they can help it.

Perhaps soon the Right will come up with a bill to ban blogs, and declare that we can no longer defend our rights in court. It’s certainly a convenient strategy to avoid that pesky Constitution.

Ohio Televangelist and Political Activist Calls for Exodus from Public Schools

Ohio televangelist Rod Parsley urges his congregation and viewing audience to withdraw their children from public schools and enroll them “in the house of the Lord” – institutions like his Harvest Preparatory School.

Why would you give birth to a child, give it back to God, and then send it to be educated 33 hours a week in the halls of secular humanistic philosophy? Why would we ever do that? We have been sold a lie! But thank God, there is a possibility. There is a possibility that your child can walk hallways where the name of God is not banned but exalted. There is a possibility that your child can be in a classroom in science where they’re taught creation science and not the lie of evolution — that has never been proven and Darwin himself said it didn’t work. There is a chance for a great and righteous nation to arise out of the smoldering ash heap of moral decline.

View the video: Broadband or Dial-Up.

Parsley’s Center for Moral ClarityReformation Ohio has been closely allied with Ken Blackwell’s campaign, setting up rallies of “Patriot Pastors” to drum up electoral activism and hear Blackwell’s pitch. Blackwell supports expanding private school vouchers in Ohio, and in the past has even called for putting all school funding through a voucher system—which would give the anti-public education movement all the public funds they need.

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Activism Posts Archive

Brian Tashman, Friday 10/08/2010, 3:31pm
Although a number of media narratives describe 2010 election as revealing the rise of conservative woman, the "Awakening of the Conservative Woman," or the "Year of the Mama Grizzly," and what Sarah Palin calls “the emerging conservative, feminist identity,” it’s easy to forget that women have always played a prominent role in the conservative movement: Phyllis Schlafly, Clare Boothe Luce, and Beverly LaHaye, just to name a few. But are women really running to embrace the rightwing agenda in 2010? Most polls show that the growing support for Republican... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Thursday 09/30/2010, 9:40am
Via Al Mohler we get this fascinating study by Mark A. Smith of the University of Washington in "Political Science Quarterly" entitled "Religion, Divorce, and the Missing Culture War in America" [PDF]. In it, Smith examines why Religious Right groups who spend all of their time talking about family values and the sanctity of marriage seem to give only lip-service, at best, to fighting divorce, despite the fact that it is repeatedly mentioned in the Bible. The Right may mentione it, generally when bemoaning the deteriorating culture, but they invest little to no effort in... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 09/27/2010, 10:00am
Last week we noted that Randall Terry and crew were so pleased with their Quran-destroying escapades on 9/11 that they were planning on taking their show on the road because that is what Jesus would want. But Terry knows that he cannot do it all himself, which is why he has produced this video demonstrating exactly how to hold a press conference and engage in your own anti-Quran activism by printing out passages on pieces of paper and then crumpling them up and tossing them on the ground: MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Thursday 09/23/2010, 1:50pm
One of the most difficult things about keeping track of the rise of self-proclaimed Prophets, Apostles, and Intercessors within the Religious Right is the fact that the movement is so massive and diverse.  There are dozens, if not hundreds, of different leaders all with different organizations and ministries which often work together and frequently overlap while maintaining their own agenda's and handing out their own prophecies. For every Lou Engle, Jim Garlow, and Cindy Jacobs who makes the open transition to Religious Right activism, there are dozens of other equally committed but... MORE
Peter Montgomery, Tuesday 09/21/2010, 9:43am
The so-called Values Voter Summit, organized by the Family Research Council and sponsored by a number of right-wing groups, brought more than 2,000 activists (their count) to Washington D.C. for two solid days of speeches, workshops, networking, and a chance to spend time with others who passionately hate President Obama and the Democratic congressional leadership. Addressing the crowd were a number of GOP presidential hopefuls, including Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Mike Huckabee, and Rep. Mike Pence (who eked out a narrow victory over Huckabee in the straw poll). Not surprisingly... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Wednesday 09/15/2010, 4:00pm
Peter LaBarbera makes no secret of his views that gays have no place in the conservative movement and the Republican Party and has long waged a campaign against the Log Cabin Republicans and any GOP leader who might even consider meeting with the group - a campaign which continues to this day, as he's currently mad at Sen. John Cornyn for agreeing to attend a fundraiser for the group. But LaBarbera is not alone, as Ben Smith reports that Tony Perkins has written his own letter [PDF] to Cornyn espressing his "profound disappointment" and asking him to withdraw from the event: I... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 09/14/2010, 11:22am
Most of the posts I have written in the past about Dick Armey have revolved around his attacks on the social conservatives in the movement, starting back in 2006 when he blasted the Religious Right for trying to make things like the Ten Commandments and Terry Schiavo issues on which the GOP was expected to take a stand, with Armey lashing out at "[James] Dobson and his gang of thugs," calling them demagogues and "real nasty bullies" and saying that "being a Christian is no excuse for being stupid." Needless to say, the attack did not sit well with the... MORE