Legal

Anti-Muslim Activists Tied to Peter King Want to Ban Muslim Students Group

Brigitte Gabriel of ACT! for America, one of the leading anti-Muslim activists in the country, wants the University of California, Los Angeles to ban the Muslim Student Association. Gabriel is no marginal figure, as her group won a glowing endorsement from Rep. Susan Myrick (R-NC) and she will host Rep. Peter King (R-NY), who is using his perch as the Chair of the House Homeland Security Committee to launch investigations into Muslim American communities, on her premier talk show. In addition, ACT! for America’s David Yerushalmi was heavily influential in shaping legislation in Tennessee and Missouri that would make it a crime to practice Sharia law, the legal code of Islam.

ACT! for America recently announced that it wants UCLA to ban the campus chapter of the Muslim Student Association due to the groups purported links to radical Islam. “We at ACT for America are serving this petition to UCLA in our effort to ban the assembly of any group advocating the overriding of the laws of the United States Of America with their own set of laws on a publicly funded university such as UCLA,” says the group in a letter to UCLA’s Chancellor, “We are specifically sighting the Muslim Student Association in violation of this.”

The letter goes on to say, “We demand that they be removed from campus on the grounds that their purpose is to conduct a stealth jihad against America through the indoctrination of our youth on college campuses.”

Now that ACT! for America has made its extreme agenda even more obvious, does Congressman King agree with his allies at ACT! for America that universities should ban groups which represent Muslim students?

Gingrich, Barton, Bachmann, Huckabee Team Up for Religious Right Webcast

John Stemberger is the President of the Florida Family Policy Council who has recently become a cause célèbre for the Religious Right because he is facing both a $10 million defamation lawsuit and misconduct complaint stemming from his actions during the Rifqa Bary saga in 2009.

A legal defense fund has been set up with the backing of the Newt Gingrich, Jerry Boykin, David Barton, Tony Perkins, and Lou Engle ... and according to this flyer [PDF], many of these leaders -  along with Michele Bachmann, Mike Huckabee, and Haley Barbour - will be joining Stemberger for a "Florida Family Council Special Event" later this month in the form of a live webcast broadcast to churches around the nation entitled "Rediscover God in America":

History is clear: the founders of our country drew their inspiration, wisdom, and direction from the Bible. Beginning in colonial times, church leaders spoke to their congregations about the events and issues of the day in the context of Biblical truth. Rediscover God in America will lay a foundation of critical knowledge for your congregation. They'll learn how to interpret and assess current events in light of God's Word, as our founding fathers did, and how to respond Biblically and take action that aligns with His truth.

A just and prosperous nation is born and sustained by truth, not compromise. Join with thousands of churches across the nation! Bring the truth about God and America to your congregation and community.

Right-Wing Activists Malign Goodwin Liu Even As Conservative Legal Minds Support His Confirmation

Legal scholar Goodwin Liu, President Obama’s nominee for the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, is receiving a second hearing at the Senate Judiciary Committee today. Liu, who is an Associate Dean and Professor of Law at the Berkeley School of Law and a renowned legal scholar, has unsurprisingly found himself to be a top target of right-wing activists.

Ed Whalen of the Nation Review accuses Liu of “trying to fool senators and get himself appointed to the Ninth Circuit, where he would (among countless opportunities for mischief)” overrule California’s Proposition 8. In addition, a coalition of right-wing groups including the Judicial Crisis Network, Family Research Council, Concerned Women for America, Liberty Counsel, American Values, the Center for Military Readiness, the Media Research Center, the Traditional Values Coalition, Americans for Limited Government, and Citizens United have signed on to a memo condemning Liu for representing the “extreme liberal agenda of judicial activism.”

But Richard Painter, the Associate Counsel to the President during the Bush Administration, points out that while many ideological right-wing activists oppose Liu, prominent conservative legal minds like John Yoo, Ken Starr, and Clint Bolick endorse his confirmation and corroborate Liu’s qualifications. “The attacks are rife with extravagant and tendentious readings of Liu’s record,” Painter writes, “and they are based on selective quotations of Liu's writings that even then don’t prove the point”:

Liu's opponents have sought to demonize him as a "radical," "extremist," and worse. National Review Online's Ed Whelan has led the charge with a "one-stop repository" of attacks on Liu. However, for anyone who has actually read Liu's writings or watched his testimony, it's clear that the attacks--filled with polemic, caricature, and hyperbole--reveal very little about this exceptionally qualified, measured, and mainstream nominee.



Far from being radical, Liu's view probably comports with the intent of the framers who bequeathed the Constitution to their descendants with the intent that it be a useful document. Few if any of our ancestors would have intended that we run our businesses, farm our land, educate our children, or live our lives exactly the way they did, even if they did intend that the Constitution give us principles of self-government that would last for generations. Liu's perspective may be more realistic than that of some of his opponents; his view is certainly not radical.



In sum, Liu is eminently qualified. He has support from prominent conservatives. He would fill a judicial emergency vacancy, and he would add important diversity to the bench. He is pragmatic and open-minded, not dogmatic or ideological, as his support for school vouchers shows.

Many, though by no means all, of his scholarly views do not align with conservative ideology or with the policy positions of many elected officials in the Republican Party. (This might not have been the case thirty years ago, but many moderates have since left the Republican Party.) Nevertheless, his views are part of the American legal mainstream. The independence, rigor, and fair-mindedness of his writings support a confident prediction that he will be a dutiful and impartial judge.

Right-Wing Commentator Calls Marriage Equality "An Act of Societal Suicide"

Conservative activist Alan Caruba usually works as a shill for corporations and is the former communications director of the American Policy Committee, which staunchly opposes environmental protections and the United Nations. Instead of criticizing regulations on businesses, Caruba yesterday launched a tirade against the Obama administration’s decision to stop defending the unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act, calling marriage equality “an act of societal suicide” and the administration’s decision “a stealth attack on the nation.” He also derided the Obama administration for bringing the “homosexual agenda” in schools, appointing Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court, and repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell:

I have always thought that "gay" was an odd choice of words to describe homosexuals because those whom I have known rarely evinced much happiness about being regarded by the rest of society as aberrations. They may have made their personal peace with it, but the notion that a society based on heterosexuality should regard them as "normal" defies logic.

Granting homosexuals the right to marry is an act of societal suicide. I will cite some examples below.

In late February, the White House and its Department of Justice announced that it would no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) which defines marriage as the union of a man and a woman. It is a warning of moral decay that America has reached a point where it requires a law to assert this definition, recognized from the dawn of civilization, of mankind itself.



This is giving parents fits, but it was President Obama who installed Kevin Jennings as the White House "safe schools" czar in the Department of Education even though Jennings is a major homosexual activist who has pushed the homosexual agenda in the nation's schools. Jennings, prior to his appointment, was the founder and executive director of the nationwide Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network.

President Obama nominated Elena Kagan to a lifetime position as an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court despite her activism as Dean of the Harvard Law School during which she expelled military recruiters over the Armed Forces' ban on homosexuals. She called it a "moral injustice of the first order." She was known for recruiting homosexual activists to the school's faculty such as the former ACLU lawyer, William Rubenstein, to teach "queer" legal theory and elevated an outspoken lesbian professor, Janet Halley. She encouraged Harvard students to get involved in homosexual activist legal work.

These White House appointments are just one part of what millions of Americans have come to realize as measures taken to undermine the nation's moral authority, its legal system, its economy, its military strength and defense, and its energy security.

In 2012 Americans will clean house in the White House and the Congress, electing men and women who understand that homosexuality is an unfit condition for marriage, for service in the military, and that its justification in the states and the courts is a stealth attack on the nation.

Right-Wing Commentator Calls Marriage Equality "An Act of Societal Suicide"

Conservative activist Alan Caruba usually works as a shill for corporations and is the former communications director of the American Policy Committee, which staunchly opposes environmental protections and the United Nations. Instead of criticizing regulations on businesses, Caruba yesterday launched a tirade against the Obama administration’s decision to stop defending the unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act, calling marriage equality “an act of societal suicide” and the administration’s decision “a stealth attack on the nation.” He also derided the Obama administration for bringing the “homosexual agenda” in schools, appointing Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court, and repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell:

I have always thought that "gay" was an odd choice of words to describe homosexuals because those whom I have known rarely evinced much happiness about being regarded by the rest of society as aberrations. They may have made their personal peace with it, but the notion that a society based on heterosexuality should regard them as "normal" defies logic.

Granting homosexuals the right to marry is an act of societal suicide. I will cite some examples below.

In late February, the White House and its Department of Justice announced that it would no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) which defines marriage as the union of a man and a woman. It is a warning of moral decay that America has reached a point where it requires a law to assert this definition, recognized from the dawn of civilization, of mankind itself.



This is giving parents fits, but it was President Obama who installed Kevin Jennings as the White House "safe schools" czar in the Department of Education even though Jennings is a major homosexual activist who has pushed the homosexual agenda in the nation's schools. Jennings, prior to his appointment, was the founder and executive director of the nationwide Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network.

President Obama nominated Elena Kagan to a lifetime position as an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court despite her activism as Dean of the Harvard Law School during which she expelled military recruiters over the Armed Forces' ban on homosexuals. She called it a "moral injustice of the first order." She was known for recruiting homosexual activists to the school's faculty such as the former ACLU lawyer, William Rubenstein, to teach "queer" legal theory and elevated an outspoken lesbian professor, Janet Halley. She encouraged Harvard students to get involved in homosexual activist legal work.

These White House appointments are just one part of what millions of Americans have come to realize as measures taken to undermine the nation's moral authority, its legal system, its economy, its military strength and defense, and its energy security.

In 2012 Americans will clean house in the White House and the Congress, electing men and women who understand that homosexuality is an unfit condition for marriage, for service in the military, and that its justification in the states and the courts is a stealth attack on the nation.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Congrats to Pamela Geller for getting herself designated an anti-Islam hatemonger by the SPLC.
  • Tom DeLay has set up a legal defense fund.
  • Focus on the Family’s Tim Tebow Super Bowl ad won the Best Television Commercial award at the National Religious Broadcasters conference. What an honor.
  • Focus on the Family's Tom Minnery warns that if people ignore the Religious Right "then individual liberty degenerates into selfishness, and eventually into social chaos. And, at that point, it is only the loaded gun and the barbed wire fence that can preserve order."
  • Finally, the quote of the day from Bryan Fischer: "If the federal government shuts down, surely we can do better than we did in 1995. "Essential" workers are those needed to protect human life, property and national security. But in 1995, according to the GAO, Commerce kept 64% of its staff, and Interior 53%. HHS kept over 40% of staff in place. At HUD and at regulatory agencies, 78% kept right on working. That's ridiculous. Not a single worker in any of these agencies is 'essential' for the preservation of either life, property or national defense."

Mohler: It's Inevitable That Marriage Equality Will Be "Normalized, Legalized, and Recognized"

Today, Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, joined Focus on the Family's Jim Daly on his radio program to discuss the news that the Obama administration would no longer defend DOMA in court.

During the discussion, Mohler said that it is all but inevitable that day is coming when marriage equality will "become normalized, legalized, and recognized in the culture" and that Christians had better be prepared for living in a nation where they find themselves in the minority:

Daly: Do you think, as we look at those demographics and the polling data and all the other things, as the Christian community, is this something that is inevitable? I know this is a tough question here on Christian radio but I think it's time to start talking about what if.

Mohler: Well Jim I appreciate your candor in that because I think a lot of Christian conservatives are going to try to deny the obvious. I mean, when we're talking about same-sex marriage, we're talking about something that is already legal in one form or another in basically twelve states. So whether they call it marriage, as they do in a few states, or marriage lite as they have now in twelve states, the reality is that a good number of Americans are living where they're already facing not just the inevitably, but the reality, of same-sex marriage. I think it's clear that something like same-sex marriage - indeed, almost exactly what we would envision by that - is going to become normalized, legalized, and recognized in the culture. It's time for Christians to start thinking about how we're going to deal with that.

I think in the United States, Evangelical Christians in particular, have kind of grown accustomed to having our beliefs and moral convictions and ways of life supported by the state, by the larger culture and we're going to have to learn what it means to live faithfully as Christians when we do not have those supports. You know, it's one thing to live believing that you're in the majority position - everything comes pretty easy that way ...

Daly: A Christian nation.

Mohler: That's right. But when you live in a situation where we're clearly a minority holding to certain convictions that the larger culture either doesn't hold or doesn't hold tenaciously or as very important, we're going to find out just where we stand as Christians.

Mohler: It's Inevitable That Marriage Equality Will Be "Normalized, Legalized, and Recognized"

Today, Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, joined Focus on the Family's Jim Daly on his radio program to discuss the news that the Obama administration would no longer defend DOMA in court.

During the discussion, Mohler said that it is all but inevitable that day is coming when marriage equality will "become normalized, legalized, and recognized in the culture" and that Christians had better be prepared for living in a nation where they find themselves in the minority:

Daly: Do you think, as we look at those demographics and the polling data and all the other things, as the Christian community, is this something that is inevitable? I know this is a tough question here on Christian radio but I think it's time to start talking about what if.

Mohler: Well Jim I appreciate your candor in that because I think a lot of Christian conservatives are going to try to deny the obvious. I mean, when we're talking about same-sex marriage, we're talking about something that is already legal in one form or another in basically twelve states. So whether they call it marriage, as they do in a few states, or marriage lite as they have now in twelve states, the reality is that a good number of Americans are living where they're already facing not just the inevitably, but the reality, of same-sex marriage. I think it's clear that something like same-sex marriage - indeed, almost exactly what we would envision by that - is going to become normalized, legalized, and recognized in the culture. It's time for Christians to start thinking about how we're going to deal with that.

I think in the United States, Evangelical Christians in particular, have kind of grown accustomed to having our beliefs and moral convictions and ways of life supported by the state, by the larger culture and we're going to have to learn what it means to live faithfully as Christians when we do not have those supports. You know, it's one thing to live believing that you're in the majority position - everything comes pretty easy that way ...

Daly: A Christian nation.

Mohler: That's right. But when you live in a situation where we're clearly a minority holding to certain convictions that the larger culture either doesn't hold or doesn't hold tenaciously or as very important, we're going to find out just where we stand as Christians.

DOMA Decision Becomes Test Of GOP Fealty To Religious Right

When news broke that the Obama administration had decided to stop defending DOMA in court because the law in unconstitutional, the Religious Right went nuts and immediately swung into action to get Congress to step in and take up the fight.

But as both the Washington Post and New York Times report, the GOP establishment doesn't appear particularly eager to wade into this battle:

President Obama’s decision to abandon his legal support for the Defense of Marriage Act has generated only mild rebukes from the Republicans hoping to succeed him in 2012, evidence of a shifting political climate in which social issues are being crowded out by economic concerns.

The Justice Department announced on Wednesday that after two years of defending the law — hailed by proponents in 1996 as an cornerstone in the protection of traditional values — the president and his attorney general have concluded it is unconstitutional.

In the hours that followed, Sarah Palin’s Facebook site was silent. Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, was close-mouthed. Tim Pawlenty, the former governor of Minnesota, released a Web video — on the labor union protests in Wisconsin — and waited a day before issuing a marriage statement saying he was “disappointed.”

Others, like Newt Gingrich, the former House speaker, and Haley Barbour, the governor of Mississippi, took their time weighing in, and then did so only in the most tepid terms. “The Justice Department is supposed to defend our laws,” Mr. Barbour said.

Asked if Mitch Daniels, the Republican governor of Indiana and a possible presidential candidate, had commented on the marriage decision, a spokeswoman said that he “hasn’t, and with other things we have going on here right now, he has no plans.”

But if the GOP thinks it can sit this one out, it had better think again because its Religious Right base is demanding that Republican leaders and candidates step up and make this a central issue heading into 2012:

Angered conservatives are vowing to make same-sex marriage a front-burner election issue, nationally and in the states, following the Obama administration's announcement that it will no longer defend the federal law denying recognition to gay married couples.

"The ripple effect nationwide will be to galvanize supporters of marriage," said staff counsel Jim Campbell of Alliance Defense Fund, a conservative legal group.

On the federal level, opponents of same-sex marriage urged Republican leaders in the House of Representatives to intervene on their own to defend the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, against pending court challenges.

"The president has thrown down the gauntlet, challenging Congress," said Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council. "It is incumbent upon the Republican leadership to respond by intervening to defend DOMA, or they will become complicit in the president's neglect of duty."

Conservatives also said they would now expect the eventual 2012 GOP presidential nominee to highlight the marriage debate as part of a challenge to Obama, putting the issue on equal footing with the economy.

...

Perkins, the Family Research Council leader, suggested that House Republicans would risk alienating their conservative base if they did not tackle the marriage issue head-on.

"The president was kind of tossing this cultural grenade into the Republican camp," he said.

"If they ignore this, it becomes an issue that will lead to some very troubling outcomes for Republicans."

DOMA Decision Becomes Test Of GOP Fealty To Religious Right

When news broke that the Obama administration had decided to stop defending DOMA in court because the law in unconstitutional, the Religious Right went nuts and immediately swung into action to get Congress to step in and take up the fight.

But as both the Washington Post and New York Times report, the GOP establishment doesn't appear particularly eager to wade into this battle:

President Obama’s decision to abandon his legal support for the Defense of Marriage Act has generated only mild rebukes from the Republicans hoping to succeed him in 2012, evidence of a shifting political climate in which social issues are being crowded out by economic concerns.

The Justice Department announced on Wednesday that after two years of defending the law — hailed by proponents in 1996 as an cornerstone in the protection of traditional values — the president and his attorney general have concluded it is unconstitutional.

In the hours that followed, Sarah Palin’s Facebook site was silent. Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, was close-mouthed. Tim Pawlenty, the former governor of Minnesota, released a Web video — on the labor union protests in Wisconsin — and waited a day before issuing a marriage statement saying he was “disappointed.”

Others, like Newt Gingrich, the former House speaker, and Haley Barbour, the governor of Mississippi, took their time weighing in, and then did so only in the most tepid terms. “The Justice Department is supposed to defend our laws,” Mr. Barbour said.

Asked if Mitch Daniels, the Republican governor of Indiana and a possible presidential candidate, had commented on the marriage decision, a spokeswoman said that he “hasn’t, and with other things we have going on here right now, he has no plans.”

But if the GOP thinks it can sit this one out, it had better think again because its Religious Right base is demanding that Republican leaders and candidates step up and make this a central issue heading into 2012:

Angered conservatives are vowing to make same-sex marriage a front-burner election issue, nationally and in the states, following the Obama administration's announcement that it will no longer defend the federal law denying recognition to gay married couples.

"The ripple effect nationwide will be to galvanize supporters of marriage," said staff counsel Jim Campbell of Alliance Defense Fund, a conservative legal group.

On the federal level, opponents of same-sex marriage urged Republican leaders in the House of Representatives to intervene on their own to defend the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, against pending court challenges.

"The president has thrown down the gauntlet, challenging Congress," said Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council. "It is incumbent upon the Republican leadership to respond by intervening to defend DOMA, or they will become complicit in the president's neglect of duty."

Conservatives also said they would now expect the eventual 2012 GOP presidential nominee to highlight the marriage debate as part of a challenge to Obama, putting the issue on equal footing with the economy.

...

Perkins, the Family Research Council leader, suggested that House Republicans would risk alienating their conservative base if they did not tackle the marriage issue head-on.

"The president was kind of tossing this cultural grenade into the Republican camp," he said.

"If they ignore this, it becomes an issue that will lead to some very troubling outcomes for Republicans."

House Republicans and Religious Right Collaborate to Save Unconstitutional DOMA

After the Obama administration announced that it will no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) because the law is unconstitutional, groups opposed to marriage equality immediately sprung into action. The Family Research Center, Concerned Women For America, and Focus on the Family’s political arm CitizenLink swiftly demanded that Congress pass a resolution to takeover the legal defense of DOMA. “Marriage advocates are ready to defend God’s design,” said Jennifer Mesko of CitizenLink, “They are calling on Congress to intervene and defend DOMA.”

According to the Washington Times, Religious Right leaders are now plotting with Republicans in Congress to do just that:

House Republicans and conservative groups are working together behind the scenes to fill the legal void created Wednesday when the Obama administration announced that it would no longer defend the federal law banning gay marriage.

The House leadership likely will introduce a resolution early next week to intervene in the four lawsuits pending against the Defense of Marriage Act, better known as DOMA, the 1996 federal law that defines marriage as between one man and one woman, conservative leaders say.

“I know there have been discussions. I’ve been part of the discussions,” said Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council. “The question is how to handle this hot potato. The president is trying to throw a monkey wrench into what’s been a very unified majority.”

Jordan Sekulow, policy director for the American Center for Law and Justice, said that although individual members could introduce their own measures in support of the law, he expects Republicans to present a united front with one resolution.

“We’re already in private discussions with members of Congress about defending DOMA,” said Mr. Sekulow. “A unified voice coming from the House would be more powerful.”

The consensus was that such a resolution would pass easily and with bipartisan support. “I don’t think there’s any question that this would pass,” Mr. Perkins said.



The decision effectively leaves the law defenseless in the face of four lawsuits, two filed in federal court in Massachusetts and two filed in federal court in New York. The Massachusetts cases are now at the appellate level.

“That’s a huge-level disadvantage for whoever takes this up,” said Mr. Sekulow. “Briefs are due soon in the 1st Circuit [Court of Appeals]. Congress is out of session this week. As of now, there’s no one defending DOMA.”

House Republicans and Religious Right Collaborate to Save Unconstitutional DOMA

After the Obama administration announced that it will no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) because the law is unconstitutional, groups opposed to marriage equality immediately sprung into action. The Family Research Center, Concerned Women For America, and Focus on the Family’s political arm CitizenLink swiftly demanded that Congress pass a resolution to takeover the legal defense of DOMA. “Marriage advocates are ready to defend God’s design,” said Jennifer Mesko of CitizenLink, “They are calling on Congress to intervene and defend DOMA.”

According to the Washington Times, Religious Right leaders are now plotting with Republicans in Congress to do just that:

House Republicans and conservative groups are working together behind the scenes to fill the legal void created Wednesday when the Obama administration announced that it would no longer defend the federal law banning gay marriage.

The House leadership likely will introduce a resolution early next week to intervene in the four lawsuits pending against the Defense of Marriage Act, better known as DOMA, the 1996 federal law that defines marriage as between one man and one woman, conservative leaders say.

“I know there have been discussions. I’ve been part of the discussions,” said Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council. “The question is how to handle this hot potato. The president is trying to throw a monkey wrench into what’s been a very unified majority.”

Jordan Sekulow, policy director for the American Center for Law and Justice, said that although individual members could introduce their own measures in support of the law, he expects Republicans to present a united front with one resolution.

“We’re already in private discussions with members of Congress about defending DOMA,” said Mr. Sekulow. “A unified voice coming from the House would be more powerful.”

The consensus was that such a resolution would pass easily and with bipartisan support. “I don’t think there’s any question that this would pass,” Mr. Perkins said.



The decision effectively leaves the law defenseless in the face of four lawsuits, two filed in federal court in Massachusetts and two filed in federal court in New York. The Massachusetts cases are now at the appellate level.

“That’s a huge-level disadvantage for whoever takes this up,” said Mr. Sekulow. “Briefs are due soon in the 1st Circuit [Court of Appeals]. Congress is out of session this week. As of now, there’s no one defending DOMA.”

Iowa Personhood Bill Could Legalize the Murder of Abortion Providers

After the failed attempt in South Dakota to push a bill that would legalize the killing of abortion providers, Iowa is now set to take up legislation with a similar effect. The Iowa State House is weighing both a Personhood bill, which gives legal rights to zygotes by classifying them as separate “persons,” and a bill that expands the right to use deadly force to protect a third party. The Personhood legislation attempts to criminalize abortion and common forms of birth control and has already been approved by a State House subcommittee; Personhood Amendments are also under consideration in Mississippi, North Dakota, and Georgia. Essentially, by declaring that a zygote and a fetus have all of the same legal rights as a “person” while also broadening the legal protections regarding the reasonable use of deadly force, abortion providers could be legally targeted with the rationale of protecting a third party.

Lynda Waddington of The Iowa Independent reports:

Currently, abortion is also settled law in Iowa. But House File 153, sponsored by 28 Republicans, challenges it. Under that bill, the state would be mandated to recognize and protect “life” from the moment of conception until “natural death” with the full force of the law and state and federal constitutions. Essentially, the bill declares that from the moment a male sperm and a female ovum join to create a fertilized egg that a person exists.

House File 7, which has been sponsored by 29 GOP House members, seeks to expand state law regarding use of reasonable force, including deadly force. Current state laws provide that citizens are not required to retreat from their dwelling or place of business if they or a third party are threatened. The proposal would significantly expand this to state that citizens are not required to retreat from “any place at which the person has a right to be present,” and that in such instances, the citizen has the right to use reasonable force, including deadly force, to protect himself or a third party from serious injury or death or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.



Todd Miler, a criminal defense attorney in Des Moines, agrees that these two bills, when combined, create a situation that could lead to someone claiming the killing of an abortion provider or a family planning worker was reasonable use of deadly force.

“My first thought when I looked at House File 153 was that it was a first step — something that had been put out there as a first step toward a larger political goal. But, when you place it next to House File 7 the potential ramifications are startling,” Miler said.

“[House File 7] explicitly provides that people have a right to defend themselves or others at any place they are legally allowed to be. That would definitely include sidewalks or streets outside of clinics. They could attempt to kill a physician or a clinic worker, and if they did so while believing they were protecting another person, which would be defined under House File 153 as a fetus, then, under this law, they would have the right to do that.”

Iowa Personhood Bill Could Legalize the Murder of Abortion Providers

After the failed attempt in South Dakota to push a bill that would legalize the killing of abortion providers, Iowa is now set to take up legislation with a similar effect. The Iowa State House is weighing both a Personhood bill, which gives legal rights to zygotes by classifying them as separate “persons,” and a bill that expands the right to use deadly force to protect a third party. The Personhood legislation attempts to criminalize abortion and common forms of birth control and has already been approved by a State House subcommittee; Personhood Amendments are also under consideration in Mississippi, North Dakota, and Georgia. Essentially, by declaring that a zygote and a fetus have all of the same legal rights as a “person” while also broadening the legal protections regarding the reasonable use of deadly force, abortion providers could be legally targeted with the rationale of protecting a third party.

Lynda Waddington of The Iowa Independent reports:

Currently, abortion is also settled law in Iowa. But House File 153, sponsored by 28 Republicans, challenges it. Under that bill, the state would be mandated to recognize and protect “life” from the moment of conception until “natural death” with the full force of the law and state and federal constitutions. Essentially, the bill declares that from the moment a male sperm and a female ovum join to create a fertilized egg that a person exists.

House File 7, which has been sponsored by 29 GOP House members, seeks to expand state law regarding use of reasonable force, including deadly force. Current state laws provide that citizens are not required to retreat from their dwelling or place of business if they or a third party are threatened. The proposal would significantly expand this to state that citizens are not required to retreat from “any place at which the person has a right to be present,” and that in such instances, the citizen has the right to use reasonable force, including deadly force, to protect himself or a third party from serious injury or death or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.



Todd Miler, a criminal defense attorney in Des Moines, agrees that these two bills, when combined, create a situation that could lead to someone claiming the killing of an abortion provider or a family planning worker was reasonable use of deadly force.

“My first thought when I looked at House File 153 was that it was a first step — something that had been put out there as a first step toward a larger political goal. But, when you place it next to House File 7 the potential ramifications are startling,” Miler said.

“[House File 7] explicitly provides that people have a right to defend themselves or others at any place they are legally allowed to be. That would definitely include sidewalks or streets outside of clinics. They could attempt to kill a physician or a clinic worker, and if they did so while believing they were protecting another person, which would be defined under House File 153 as a fetus, then, under this law, they would have the right to do that.”

Religious Right Reactions to DOJ's DOMA Decision

Earlier today it was reported that President Obama had ordered the Justice Department to stop defending the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act.

So far, reactions from the Religious Right have been few and far between but we are going to post them here as they trickle in:

National Organization for Marriage:

“We have not yet begun to fight for marriage,” said Brian Brown, president of NOM.

“The Democrats are responding to their election loss with a series of extraordinary, extra-constitutional end runs around democracy, whether it’s fleeing the state in Wisconsin and Indiana to prevent a vote, or unilaterally declaring homosexuals a protected class under our Constitution, as President Obama just did,” said Brown. “We call on the House to intervene to protect DOMA, and to tell the Obama administration they have to respect the limits on their power. This fight is not over, it has only begun!”

...

“On the one hand this is a truly shocking extra-constitutional power grab in declaring gay people are a protected class, and it’s also a defection of duty on the part of the President Obama,” said Maggie Gallagher, Chairman of NOM, “On the other hand, the Obama administration was throwing this case in court anyway. The good news is this now clears the way for the House to intervene and to get lawyers in the court room who actually want to defend the law, and not please their powerful political special interests.”

FRC:

"It's a dereliction of duty,'' said Tom McClusky, senior vice president of Family Research Council Action. "Whether they agree with the law or not is irrelevant...The Obama administration has purposely dropped the ball here."

AFA:

"I think it's a clear sign that we simply cannot avoid engaging on the social issues," Bryan Fischer, director of issue analysis for the group, told TPM. "Mitch Daniels has called for a truce on social issues and that would be fine if the homosexual lobby was willing to lay down arms, but they're obviously not and this proves it. A truce is nothing more than a surrender."

Fischer said he was not surprised by the president's decision.

"Frankly I was surprised that President Obama pretended to be a defender of natural marriage as long as he did," he said.

He said that the White House move should serve as "a wake-up call to all conservatives that fundamental American values regarding the family are under all-out assault by this administration. It ought to represent a clarion call to man the barricades before we lose what is left of the Judeo-Christian system of values in our public life."

Focus on the Family:

Tom Minnery, a vice president with Focus on the Family, said the Obama administration did not aggressively defend the Defense of Marriage Act in any case. "If the federal government will not defend federal laws, we're facing legal chaos," Minnery said. "If the administration can pick and choose what laws it defends, which law is next?"

"We would hope Congress uses the tools at its disposal to counter this decision and defend marriage," Minnery said.

ADF:

“Typically, when a law is challenged, the government has a duty to defend the law, and typically they do so with the most vigorous possible defense,” said Jim Campbell, attorney with the conservative Alliance Defense Fund. “In this case, we’ve seen executive branch officials refuse to do so.”

Official FRC statement:

"This decision by President Obama and the Department of Justice is appalling. The President's failure to defend DOMA is also a failure to fulfill his oath to 'faithfully execute the office of President of the United States.' What will be the next law that he will choose not to enforce or uphold?

"Marriage as a male-female union has been easily defended in court and overwhelmingly supported by the American people. There is absolutely no excuse beyond pandering to his liberal political base for President Obama's decision to abandon his constitutional role to defend a federal law enacted overwhelmingly by Congress.

"With this decision the President has thrown down the gauntlet, challenging Congress. It is incumbent upon the Republican leadership to respond by intervening to defend DOMA, or they will become complicit in the President's neglect of duty," concluded Perkins.

Liberty Counsel:

Today President Barack Obama instructed the U.S. Attorney General, Eric Holder, and the Department of Justice to cease defending the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). “This is outrageous and unthinkable that the President would abandon the defense of marriage,” said Mathew Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel. “President Obama has betrayed the American people by his refusal to defend the federal law that affirms what many courts upheld as constitutional, namely, that marriage is between one man and one woman,” said Staver.

...

“Regardless of President Obama’s own ideological agenda, as President, he and his Attorney General have a duty to defend lawfully passed legislation, especially when the essence of the law has been upheld by many courts. Thirty states have passed marriage amendments affirming marriage as one man and one woman. Today President Obama has abandoned his role as President of the United States and transformed his office into the President of the Divided States. He has been the most divisive president in American history. He has today declared war on the American people and the fundamental values that are shared by most Americans. His radicalism resulted in the historical push-back in the 2010 elections. His radicalism today will come back around when the people respond to this betrayal in 2012,” said Staver.

TVC:

“The Obama Administration has been sabotaging marriage in direct contradiction to his campaign promises. Today, President Obama takes his most unprecedented step yet, choosing to rule and reign through executive decree in what could only be called a supra-constitutional act. After massive defeats at the polls in November, a total repudiation on health care, and staring down a cost-cutting Congress, Obama is looking to secure what little base remains. Obama’s actions today are an unprecedented grab for power and perhaps the most audacious in the 235 year history of the American republic.

“President Obama believes he has “concluded” that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional, as passed along by Attorney General Eric Holder -- effectively asserting that Obama may rule by whim and decree.

“We are a nation of laws, not whims.

“Virtually every state in the country has overwhelmingly passed laws and state constitutional amendments protecting marriage. This unprecedented power grab demands the immediate reaction of the United States House of Representatives, who must do everything possible to fight back against what can only be described as a despotic and alarming attack on the rule of law.”

Catholic League:

Now Obama is officially on record as president opposing the defense of marriage. Thus does he pit himself against the 1996 law that was signed by President Bill Clinton, and opposed by only 15 percent in the House and 14 percent in the Senate. He also stands in opposition to the over 30 state initiatives affirming marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

Now that Obama is totally out of the closet, it will spur a genuine effort to adopt a constitutional amendment affirming the integrity of marriage.

Gary Bauer:

The president is the chief law enforcement officer, not the chief justice! It is not up to Barack Obama to determine which laws he likes and which laws he doesn’t. It is his responsibility to enforce the law until the nation’s highest court decides the law does not pass constitutional analysis.

But this president sees things very differently — he’s here to fundamentally transform America, by, among other things, redefining marriage ...

Today’s news should put to rest any suggestion that Obama has moved to the center. He has just aligned himself with the most radical elements in the culture war who are trying to redefine normalcy.

I’ll have more on this tomorrow, but I have to be honest with you: I’m worried our side has gone back to sleep. Financial support for our work has dropped significantly. But the left is energized. Obama suddenly feels free to abandon the law and let the militant homosexual rights movement force same-sex “marriage” on every state in the nation. A liberal politician is urging the unions to “get a little bloody” in the streets.

The Tea Party protests have ebbed while the left-wing radicals are fired up. The momentum seems to have shifted back to the left. Men and women of faith must remain engaged in the public policy battles of the day. The culture war is real and only one side can prevail.

Religious Right Reactions to DOJ's DOMA Decision

Earlier today it was reported that President Obama had ordered the Justice Department to stop defending the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act.

So far, reactions from the Religious Right have been few and far between but we are going to post them here as they trickle in:

National Organization for Marriage:

“We have not yet begun to fight for marriage,” said Brian Brown, president of NOM.

“The Democrats are responding to their election loss with a series of extraordinary, extra-constitutional end runs around democracy, whether it’s fleeing the state in Wisconsin and Indiana to prevent a vote, or unilaterally declaring homosexuals a protected class under our Constitution, as President Obama just did,” said Brown. “We call on the House to intervene to protect DOMA, and to tell the Obama administration they have to respect the limits on their power. This fight is not over, it has only begun!”

...

“On the one hand this is a truly shocking extra-constitutional power grab in declaring gay people are a protected class, and it’s also a defection of duty on the part of the President Obama,” said Maggie Gallagher, Chairman of NOM, “On the other hand, the Obama administration was throwing this case in court anyway. The good news is this now clears the way for the House to intervene and to get lawyers in the court room who actually want to defend the law, and not please their powerful political special interests.”

FRC:

"It's a dereliction of duty,'' said Tom McClusky, senior vice president of Family Research Council Action. "Whether they agree with the law or not is irrelevant...The Obama administration has purposely dropped the ball here."

AFA:

"I think it's a clear sign that we simply cannot avoid engaging on the social issues," Bryan Fischer, director of issue analysis for the group, told TPM. "Mitch Daniels has called for a truce on social issues and that would be fine if the homosexual lobby was willing to lay down arms, but they're obviously not and this proves it. A truce is nothing more than a surrender."

Fischer said he was not surprised by the president's decision.

"Frankly I was surprised that President Obama pretended to be a defender of natural marriage as long as he did," he said.

He said that the White House move should serve as "a wake-up call to all conservatives that fundamental American values regarding the family are under all-out assault by this administration. It ought to represent a clarion call to man the barricades before we lose what is left of the Judeo-Christian system of values in our public life."

Focus on the Family:

Tom Minnery, a vice president with Focus on the Family, said the Obama administration did not aggressively defend the Defense of Marriage Act in any case. "If the federal government will not defend federal laws, we're facing legal chaos," Minnery said. "If the administration can pick and choose what laws it defends, which law is next?"

"We would hope Congress uses the tools at its disposal to counter this decision and defend marriage," Minnery said.

ADF:

“Typically, when a law is challenged, the government has a duty to defend the law, and typically they do so with the most vigorous possible defense,” said Jim Campbell, attorney with the conservative Alliance Defense Fund. “In this case, we’ve seen executive branch officials refuse to do so.”

Official FRC statement:

"This decision by President Obama and the Department of Justice is appalling. The President's failure to defend DOMA is also a failure to fulfill his oath to 'faithfully execute the office of President of the United States.' What will be the next law that he will choose not to enforce or uphold?

"Marriage as a male-female union has been easily defended in court and overwhelmingly supported by the American people. There is absolutely no excuse beyond pandering to his liberal political base for President Obama's decision to abandon his constitutional role to defend a federal law enacted overwhelmingly by Congress.

"With this decision the President has thrown down the gauntlet, challenging Congress. It is incumbent upon the Republican leadership to respond by intervening to defend DOMA, or they will become complicit in the President's neglect of duty," concluded Perkins.

Liberty Counsel:

Today President Barack Obama instructed the U.S. Attorney General, Eric Holder, and the Department of Justice to cease defending the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). “This is outrageous and unthinkable that the President would abandon the defense of marriage,” said Mathew Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel. “President Obama has betrayed the American people by his refusal to defend the federal law that affirms what many courts upheld as constitutional, namely, that marriage is between one man and one woman,” said Staver.

...

“Regardless of President Obama’s own ideological agenda, as President, he and his Attorney General have a duty to defend lawfully passed legislation, especially when the essence of the law has been upheld by many courts. Thirty states have passed marriage amendments affirming marriage as one man and one woman. Today President Obama has abandoned his role as President of the United States and transformed his office into the President of the Divided States. He has been the most divisive president in American history. He has today declared war on the American people and the fundamental values that are shared by most Americans. His radicalism resulted in the historical push-back in the 2010 elections. His radicalism today will come back around when the people respond to this betrayal in 2012,” said Staver.

TVC:

“The Obama Administration has been sabotaging marriage in direct contradiction to his campaign promises. Today, President Obama takes his most unprecedented step yet, choosing to rule and reign through executive decree in what could only be called a supra-constitutional act. After massive defeats at the polls in November, a total repudiation on health care, and staring down a cost-cutting Congress, Obama is looking to secure what little base remains. Obama’s actions today are an unprecedented grab for power and perhaps the most audacious in the 235 year history of the American republic.

“President Obama believes he has “concluded” that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional, as passed along by Attorney General Eric Holder -- effectively asserting that Obama may rule by whim and decree.

“We are a nation of laws, not whims.

“Virtually every state in the country has overwhelmingly passed laws and state constitutional amendments protecting marriage. This unprecedented power grab demands the immediate reaction of the United States House of Representatives, who must do everything possible to fight back against what can only be described as a despotic and alarming attack on the rule of law.”

Catholic League:

Now Obama is officially on record as president opposing the defense of marriage. Thus does he pit himself against the 1996 law that was signed by President Bill Clinton, and opposed by only 15 percent in the House and 14 percent in the Senate. He also stands in opposition to the over 30 state initiatives affirming marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

Now that Obama is totally out of the closet, it will spur a genuine effort to adopt a constitutional amendment affirming the integrity of marriage.

Gary Bauer:

The president is the chief law enforcement officer, not the chief justice! It is not up to Barack Obama to determine which laws he likes and which laws he doesn’t. It is his responsibility to enforce the law until the nation’s highest court decides the law does not pass constitutional analysis.

But this president sees things very differently — he’s here to fundamentally transform America, by, among other things, redefining marriage ...

Today’s news should put to rest any suggestion that Obama has moved to the center. He has just aligned himself with the most radical elements in the culture war who are trying to redefine normalcy.

I’ll have more on this tomorrow, but I have to be honest with you: I’m worried our side has gone back to sleep. Financial support for our work has dropped significantly. But the left is energized. Obama suddenly feels free to abandon the law and let the militant homosexual rights movement force same-sex “marriage” on every state in the nation. A liberal politician is urging the unions to “get a little bloody” in the streets.

The Tea Party protests have ebbed while the left-wing radicals are fired up. The momentum seems to have shifted back to the left. Men and women of faith must remain engaged in the public policy battles of the day. The culture war is real and only one side can prevail.

Dobson and Boykin Expose The Muslim Conspiracy To Take Over The World

The other day we noted how Lt. General Jerry Boykin has become the right-wing's expert of choice on all things Islam despite the fact that he believes that there is a plot underway by President Obama to take over America by creating an army of Brownshirts loyal only to him via passage of Health Care Reform:

So I guess it is no surprise that Boykin would show up on James Dobson's radio program today to give his expert opinion on "The Threat of Islamic Terrorism" where he asserted that Islam is not a religion and does not deserve First Amendment protections and that the Muslim Brotherhood is currently entering "phase four" of a five-phase plan to take over America:

Boykin: Islam is not a religion. Islam is a totalitarian way of life and it starts with a legal system call sharia law. It is then a financial system, it is a military system, it is a government system, I mean it's a geo-political system and that is hard for us to deal with, the fact that Islam is not a religion and does not deserve First Amendment protections.

In 2004, in Annandale, Virginia we discovered a false basement in a man's home there. It turns out he was the operations officer for the Muslim Brotherhood in America. They went through all of the things in this false basement and they discovered a five-phase plan to take over America. And as you look at the plan, and it's on the web, you'll see that they are in the latter stages of phase three and moving into phase four very quickly. And they've done this just since the early Sixties when they came to this country and it is difficult for Americans, for Westerners as a whole, to understand that Islam is not a religion.

The Muslim Brotherhood was started in 1928 in Cairo. They didn't do very well in the first decade, they only had about 800 members but then along came a guy named Adolf Hitler and Adolf Hitler began to fund the Muslim Brotherhood. That's when he made the arrangements with the Mufti in Jerusalem and that's why, during World War II, the Jews couldn't return to that area because Hitler was funding the Muslim Brotherhood to keep the Jews from coming back.

Dobson: So it's rooted in hatred for the Jews and for Israel and we have now our president and his administration dealing with, in some ways, surreptitiously with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and that works counter too our interests in Israel.

Boykin: That's right. And when you say you are going to deal with the Muslim Brotherhood, you're saying I'm going to deal with al Qaeda, I'm going to deal with Hamas - these are spin-off terrorist organizations that are part of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Now I think as we look at the situation in Egypt today we need to recognize that the Muslim Brotherhood is very much at the root of this thing.

Dobson and Boykin Expose The Muslim Conspiracy To Take Over The World

The other day we noted how Lt. General Jerry Boykin has become the right-wing's expert of choice on all things Islam despite the fact that he believes that there is a plot underway by President Obama to take over America by creating an army of Brownshirts loyal only to him via passage of Health Care Reform:

So I guess it is no surprise that Boykin would show up on James Dobson's radio program today to give his expert opinion on "The Threat of Islamic Terrorism" where he asserted that Islam is not a religion and does not deserve First Amendment protections and that the Muslim Brotherhood is currently entering "phase four" of a five-phase plan to take over America:

Boykin: Islam is not a religion. Islam is a totalitarian way of life and it starts with a legal system call sharia law. It is then a financial system, it is a military system, it is a government system, I mean it's a geo-political system and that is hard for us to deal with, the fact that Islam is not a religion and does not deserve First Amendment protections.

In 2004, in Annandale, Virginia we discovered a false basement in a man's home there. It turns out he was the operations officer for the Muslim Brotherhood in America. They went through all of the things in this false basement and they discovered a five-phase plan to take over America. And as you look at the plan, and it's on the web, you'll see that they are in the latter stages of phase three and moving into phase four very quickly. And they've done this just since the early Sixties when they came to this country and it is difficult for Americans, for Westerners as a whole, to understand that Islam is not a religion.

The Muslim Brotherhood was started in 1928 in Cairo. They didn't do very well in the first decade, they only had about 800 members but then along came a guy named Adolf Hitler and Adolf Hitler began to fund the Muslim Brotherhood. That's when he made the arrangements with the Mufti in Jerusalem and that's why, during World War II, the Jews couldn't return to that area because Hitler was funding the Muslim Brotherhood to keep the Jews from coming back.

Dobson: So it's rooted in hatred for the Jews and for Israel and we have now our president and his administration dealing with, in some ways, surreptitiously with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and that works counter too our interests in Israel.

Boykin: That's right. And when you say you are going to deal with the Muslim Brotherhood, you're saying I'm going to deal with al Qaeda, I'm going to deal with Hamas - these are spin-off terrorist organizations that are part of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Now I think as we look at the situation in Egypt today we need to recognize that the Muslim Brotherhood is very much at the root of this thing.

Barton Raises Money For Stemberger's Defense By Spreading More Lies

As we have mentioned several times before, John Stemberger of the Florida Family Policy Council, was an early and central player in the Rifqa Bary saga when she turned up in Florida in 2009.  His actions during that case have now resulted in misconduct complaint being filed against him by the Florida Bar as well as a $10 million defamation lawsuit from the attorney who represented Bary's parents.

As such, Stemberger has set up a legal defense fund to cover his mounting legal expenses that has the support of Jerry Bokin, Newt Gingrich, Tony Perkins, Lou Engle and David Barton. 

And today, Barton had Stemberger on his "Wallbuilders Live" radio program where they, along with Rick Green, alleged that the lawsuit and misconduct complaint are an attempt by radical Muslims to destroy anyone who dares to criticize them. [I would like to point out that none of the claims made by Bary about her parents or the claims Stemberger asserts in this interview were ever substantiated by state investigators who examined them]:

Barton: The message is don't talk about us or we'll come after you the same way.

Green: It's an intimidation factor.

Barton: We're showing you what happens to people who talk about us or people who come after us in court - we will make you pay. And they may eventually lose, but that's only if you have enough money to outlast them. And so it really is a bad thing and we've got a good friend of ours on today that's in the middle of one of these things were Islamic groups have come after him because he stood and actually won a court for justice. And because he won, now they are going to make him pay a price.

Stemberger: Well, as your listeners may remember the name Rifqa Bary was a former Muslim teenager who made international headlines in about the summer and fall of 2009 when she ran away from her parents in Ohio to Florida, to a Methodist pastor and his wife after her parents threatened her life for not renouncing her Christian faith.

You know, she knew the repercussions of this so she was very, very careful to be discreet with it. But then when the parents, when the [leaders] of the mosque confronted the parents, that's when they began to blow up and the father specifically threatened her, demanded she denounce her faith, said that "you'll be dead to me" and that, according to her affidavit which is public knowledge, made some really specific threats ... But when they found a book on Esther in her bedroom, that's when they just said "we're going to send you back to Sri Lanka" and she knew she would just be a walking dead girl at that point.

Just weeks after [Rifqa turned 18] the lawyer who opposed Rifqa in court and who represented Rifqa's parents, Mr. Omar Tarazi, whose family has deep ties with CAIR, which is the Council on American Islamic Relations, he filed a grievance against me.

Green: This is their typical game plan. You mentioned CAIR, this is how they strike back, they trump up these kind of things and just give you a barrage of quote "ethical complains" so that you have to spend your time, energy, and money defending those instead of fighting the real fight, right?

Stemberger: Well, there is a clear growing trend of malicious lawsuits and other legal actions which are filed by adherents of radical strains of Islam and they're designed to punish, silence, and to chill legitimate speech and public discourse about Islam.

Barton: That's Islamic lawfare. I mean, they're coming after you to make him an example and say "don't anybody else every try to intervene ..."

Green: Whether they win or lose, they example is made that we're going to cost you money ...

Barton: And if there is every a time to step up and help a brother, this is it. We're not going to bring a BB gun to a tank fight. We're going to show up and we're going to take you toe-to-toe on this thing.

Barton Raises Money For Stemberger's Defense By Spreading More Lies

As we have mentioned several times before, John Stemberger of the Florida Family Policy Council, was an early and central player in the Rifqa Bary saga when she turned up in Florida in 2009.  His actions during that case have now resulted in misconduct complaint being filed against him by the Florida Bar as well as a $10 million defamation lawsuit from the attorney who represented Bary's parents.

As such, Stemberger has set up a legal defense fund to cover his mounting legal expenses that has the support of Jerry Bokin, Newt Gingrich, Tony Perkins, Lou Engle and David Barton. 

And today, Barton had Stemberger on his "Wallbuilders Live" radio program where they, along with Rick Green, alleged that the lawsuit and misconduct complaint are an attempt by radical Muslims to destroy anyone who dares to criticize them. [I would like to point out that none of the claims made by Bary about her parents or the claims Stemberger asserts in this interview were ever substantiated by state investigators who examined them]:

Barton: The message is don't talk about us or we'll come after you the same way.

Green: It's an intimidation factor.

Barton: We're showing you what happens to people who talk about us or people who come after us in court - we will make you pay. And they may eventually lose, but that's only if you have enough money to outlast them. And so it really is a bad thing and we've got a good friend of ours on today that's in the middle of one of these things were Islamic groups have come after him because he stood and actually won a court for justice. And because he won, now they are going to make him pay a price.

Stemberger: Well, as your listeners may remember the name Rifqa Bary was a former Muslim teenager who made international headlines in about the summer and fall of 2009 when she ran away from her parents in Ohio to Florida, to a Methodist pastor and his wife after her parents threatened her life for not renouncing her Christian faith.

You know, she knew the repercussions of this so she was very, very careful to be discreet with it. But then when the parents, when the [leaders] of the mosque confronted the parents, that's when they began to blow up and the father specifically threatened her, demanded she denounce her faith, said that "you'll be dead to me" and that, according to her affidavit which is public knowledge, made some really specific threats ... But when they found a book on Esther in her bedroom, that's when they just said "we're going to send you back to Sri Lanka" and she knew she would just be a walking dead girl at that point.

Just weeks after [Rifqa turned 18] the lawyer who opposed Rifqa in court and who represented Rifqa's parents, Mr. Omar Tarazi, whose family has deep ties with CAIR, which is the Council on American Islamic Relations, he filed a grievance against me.

Green: This is their typical game plan. You mentioned CAIR, this is how they strike back, they trump up these kind of things and just give you a barrage of quote "ethical complains" so that you have to spend your time, energy, and money defending those instead of fighting the real fight, right?

Stemberger: Well, there is a clear growing trend of malicious lawsuits and other legal actions which are filed by adherents of radical strains of Islam and they're designed to punish, silence, and to chill legitimate speech and public discourse about Islam.

Barton: That's Islamic lawfare. I mean, they're coming after you to make him an example and say "don't anybody else every try to intervene ..."

Green: Whether they win or lose, they example is made that we're going to cost you money ...

Barton: And if there is every a time to step up and help a brother, this is it. We're not going to bring a BB gun to a tank fight. We're going to show up and we're going to take you toe-to-toe on this thing.

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Legal Posts Archive

Peter Montgomery, Friday 08/12/2011, 1:48pm
People For the American Way is preparing to move its headquarters to another location in Washington, D.C. , after more than 20 years in the same space. That has meant a monumental effort to sort through decades of accumulated paper and figure out what to do with video recordings in more formats than you could imagine – and endless save-or-toss decisions. Fortunately, earlier this year PFAW’s huge library of primary source materials on the Religious Right political movement was transferred to the University of California Berkeley’s Center for the Comparative Study of... MORE
Brian Tashman, Friday 08/12/2011, 9:21am
In 1993 Michele Bachmann’s mentor John Eidsmoe wrote the book Gays & Guns: The Case Against Homosexuals In The Military to combat President Clinton’s efforts to repeal the ban on gays and lesbians in the military. In the face of resistance, Clinton ultimately compromised to conjure up the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy, which was recently repealed. Eidsmoe, who claimed in God & Caesar that “homosexuality invites the judgment of God upon all of society,” relies heavily on the discredited work of anti-gay researcher Paul Cameron to back his claim... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Wednesday 08/10/2011, 11:50am
I always thought that when conservatives used the phrase "states' rights," it meant that the federal government was to have limited powers and the individual states were to have the right to decide how to legislate issues for themselves. Once upon a time, Gov. Rick Perry was a supporter of that idea ... until he decided he wanted to run for president and realized that "states' rights" meant that states could recognize marriage equality and a woman's right to choose.  Seeing as such things are diametrically opposed to the agenda of the Religious Right base he needs to... MORE
Peter Montgomery, Tuesday 08/09/2011, 11:13am
Casual viewers of “The Response,” including some political reporters who don’t pay a lot of attention to the Religious Right, may have watched Texas Governor Rick Perry’s prayer rally on Saturday and wondered what all the fuss was about.  Most of the time was taken up with prayer and praise music.  Few of the speakers seemed overtly political.  Nobody used the occasion to endorse Perry’s pending presidential bid. But context is everything, and the context for this event was remarkable: a governor launching a presidential bid by teaming up with... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 08/08/2011, 9:51am
Ryan Lizza has a long profile in the new issue of The New Yorker in which he explains that "Bachmann's views have been shaped by institutions, tracts, and leaders not commonly known to secular Americans, or even to most Christians" and that "her campaign is going to be a conversation about a set of beliefs more extreme than those of any American politician of her stature." As Lizza explains, one of the people who played a key role in shaping Bachmann's views was John Eidsmoe, her professor at Oral Roberts Univeristy:  At Oral Roberts, Bachmann worked for a professor... MORE
Miranda Blue, Friday 08/05/2011, 6:14pm
Updated 8/5/2011 On August 6, Texas Gov. Rick Perry will host The Response, a “prayer rally” in Houston, along with the extremist American Family Association and a cohort of Religious Right leaders with far-right political ties. While the rally’s leaders label it a "a non-denominational, apolitical Christian prayer meeting," the history of the groups behind it suggests otherwise. The Response is powered by politically active Religious Right individuals and groups who are dedicated to bringing far-right religious view, including degrading views of gays and lesbians... MORE
Peter Montgomery, Thursday 08/04/2011, 11:19am
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... MORE