Supreme Court

FRC: Pray For Bachmann's Ex-Gay Clinic

The Family Research Council has been adamantly defending the clinic founded by Rep. Michele Bachmann and her husband since an undercover investigation revealed that the clinic was practicing discredited ‘ex-gay’ reparative therapy. The Religious Right group, which recently urged people to pray for countries that criminalize homosexuality, wants members to pray for anti-gay laws and clinics that offer “help for homosexuals to break free from addiction to homosexuality.” The FRC writes in its latest prayer alert:

Christian Counseling under Assault – This week a homosexual activist group reported findings from their undercover “sting” operation at Minnesota Christian counseling clinic owned by Republican Presidential candidate Michelle Bachman and her husband, Marcus. Sympathetic national media seemed shocked that the Christian counseling center offered help for homosexuals to break free from addiction to homosexuality through faith in Jesus Christ. Where will the homosexual assault on religious liberty stop?

May God open the eyes of all Americans to the truth regarding natural marriage and sexuality vs. homosexuality as well as homosexual rights vs. religious liberty. May officials at every level stand up for natural marriage and sexuality. May the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and state marriage amendments be upheld in the courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court. May our military men be protected from the introduction of homosexuality into their ranks. May we all stand up for our First Amendment freedoms! (Ps 82: all; Is 42:6-7; Mt 19:4; Rom 1:24-28; 1 Cor 6:9-11; 2 Tim 2:24-25)

Sally Kern Longs For The Days When Gays Were In The Closet and Homosexuality Was Illegal

In her book, Sally Kern expressed her appreciation for Alan Colmes, saying that he was "very fair and a perfect gentleman" whenever she has appeared on his radio program to defend or explain something controversial she has said.

So it was no surprise that she reached out to Colmes to promote her book or that Colmes eagerly agreed to have her on his program again last week.  But after another embarrassing performance, you have to wonder just how many more times Kern will agree to do so, given that Colmes has a habit of making it painfully obvious that she is in over her head.

Things did not start off well where, in the first minute, as Kern tried to defend her statement that homosexuality is worse then terrorism on the grounds that more people have died of AIDS than in any terrorist attack on America. 

And it only went down hill from there until, around the 11:00 mark, Kern tries to explain how she just wants gays to go back into the closet and to see our nation's laws go back to how they were before the Supreme Court struck down sodomy laws while, at the same time, struggling mightily to come up with a coherent response about why she thinks that gay couples but not straight couples should be arrested for engaging in such behavior:

Tea Party Nation Goes Birther

Judson Phillips of Tea Party Nation is taking a stand for the Birther movement, months after President Barack Obama released his long-form birth certificate to quash discredited claims that he was born outside of the U.S. Naturally, conspiracy theorists were not satisfied by evidence, and the president of one of the country’s leading tea party groups still doubts the President Obama’s citizenship. In a column sent to Tea Party Nation members praising Orly Taitz, the fanatical birther activist who has floated armed rebellion against Obama is now embarking on yet another lawsuit based on research from the birther website World Net Daily. Phillips writes that Taitz should receive an award from the American Bar Association for her campaign to prove that Obama isn’t eligible to serve as president, suggesting she may “deserve a place among the great lawyers of this country”:

Orly Taitz has waged an almost one-woman war on the eligibility issue. She is absolutely convinced that Barack Obama is not legally qualified to be President. She had endured insults, threats, some from Judges, fines and every roadblock the Obama regime could throw her way. Had she been as tenacious on a similar issue with George W. Bush, she would be the toast of the legal community.

Orly probably does not want an ABA award, but she may be getting closer to something of great importance to her. It is the “holy grail” of the eligibility movement.

Orly Taitz may be about to get the original, type written birth certificate of Barack Obama.



If Obama was really born in Hawaii and everything is as advertised, his lawyers can simply let the birth certificate be provided to Orly Taitz and that will end the matter. Given the history of the Obama regime and his defense of his birth certificate, even though he has released a forged birth certificate, that is unlikely.



Some conservatives derisively dismiss anyone who supports the eligibility issue as a “birther.” There certainly is enough evidence out there to raise questions. The significance of the eligibility issue is what happens if we are right. If Obama was never eligible to serve as President, everything he did is void. Two Supreme Court Justices, gone. A host of Federal Judges, gone. Every bill he signed, gone. Obamacare, gone.

What are the chances of this happening? Who knows? The bigger question is, given the potential reward of undoing everything Obama has done, why any conservative dismisses the eligibility issues, as “birtherism” is simply beyond belief.

If Orly Taitz wins, she will deserve a place among the great lawyers of this country, who fought incredible odds to win justice. The left wing American Bar Association will never give her an award for this. But I’m willing to bet she’s not saving any space on her wall for an ABA award either.

Fischer: Gays Already Have Marriage Equality

Bryan Fischer spent the entire first hour of his radio program today discussing the passage of marriage equality legislation in New York last week in typical Fischer-fashion ... which means me focused on warning about the health risks of gay sex while railing against the "hate crimes" gay activists are committing against Christians.

And, for good measure, he also explained that there was no need to "marriage equality" legislation because gays already have the equality to marry ... anyone of the opposite sex:

Allow me to just point out, once again, that this is literally the same argument made in defense of anti-miscegenation laws:

When societies decide who can and who can't legally marry, they determine who is and isn't really a part of the family. These inclusions and exclusions take place at such an intimate level that they shape what seems natural and, in turn, what is stigmatized as unnatural.

...

From the 1860s through the 1960s, the American legal system elevated the notion that interracial marriage was unnatural to commonsense status and made it the law of the land. During this period, miscegenation law channeled property, propriety, personal choice, and legitimate procreation into one very particular kind of monogamous marital pair: couples that were made of up one White man and one White woman, whose sameness of race was required by law and whose difference in sex was taken entirely for granted. The more Whites believe that interracial marriage was unnatural, the more they assumed that the marriage of one White man to one White woman was the only kind of marriage worthy of the name - and the more they saw their own marriages as the fortunate result of individual romantic preference rather than the obligatory outcome of a legal system steeped in gendered assumptions about race and heterosexuality.

...

The constitutional fiction of miscegenation law held that laws punishing both partners in an interracial relationship were racially equal rather than racially discriminatory. This, for example, was the position the Alabama Supreme Court put forth in 1881 in Pace v. State, a case involving a White woman and a Black man, when it ruled:

The fact that a different punishment is affixed to the offense of adultery when committed between a negro and a white person, and when committed between two white people or two negroes, does not constitute a discrimination against or in favor of either race. The discrimination is not directed against the person of any particular color or race, but against the offense, the nature of which is determined by the opposite color of the cohabiting parties. The punishment of each offending party, white or black, is precisely the same. There is obviously no difference or discrimination in the punishment. The evil tendency of the crime of living in adultery or fornication is greater when it is committed between persons of the two races than between persons of the same race.

The was also the position the Oregon Supreme Court maintained a half century later when it ruled that its miscegenation law did not discriminate against Indians because it "applies alike to all persons, either white, negroes, Chinese, Kanaka, or Indians."

WND Writer Wants Marriage Equality Supporters Tried And Punished

Ted Beahr of the Christian Film and Television Commission and the publisher of Movieguide, “movie reviews through a Christian perspective,” wants New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and state legislators who backed marriage equality should be “subject to indictment, trial and just punishment.” Writing for WorldNetDaily, Beahr believes that New York’s marriage equality law not only stands in the face of God’s law but is also unconstitutional, because Beahr says that the Constitution must comply with God’s law. Beahr asserts that “the homosexualization” of America is part of a Communist conspiracy and ends the column by misattributing a famous quote of Supreme Court Justice John Marshall to Karl Marx in order to bolster his case:

Pages could be, have been and should be written about the progressive Marxist destruction of the American constitutional republic. And pages could be, have been and should be written about the destructive nature of the homosexualization of the culture. With regard to the illegal action of the New York state government, it is more important to understand clearly that the civil government has no authority in area of the free exercise of religion such as marriage. If it has no authority and tries to exercise power not vested to it, then the state is acting illegally.



We need to stand for God's law in the face of the power grab by those in civil authority who know no restraints.

New York and the other increasingly socialized states have not only violated God's law, they have also violated their own Constitution and the will of the governed. When they do that, they are just like King George. They have abdicated their moral and legal authority and are subject to indictment, trial and just punishment.

Now, all those who freely exercise their inalienable right to religious faith must stop acting like useful idiots and fellow travelers by going along to get along. Instead, they must stand for their God-given rights by proclaiming loud and clear that these New York government servants have crossed the line into illegal activity that has no authority and makes them criminals.

Often, people of faith and values do not stand up because they have been slowly boiled in the brine of socialism and so give the states powers they have no authority to use. Often the state or federal government creates the problem by violating our individual rights to property, estates, income, etc., through the Marxist device of illicit taxation. Then the government argues that the state needs to govern marriage to alleviate the tax burdens the state created so that it can encourage marriage. Such circular and dishonest reasoning has almost deceived the very electorate.

Now the people must throw off the stupor of Marxist doublespeak and return to the basic principles that made them free to live at peace in the American republic that recognizes "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness."

As Marx proclaimed, "The power to tax is the power to destroy." Do not let it destroy godly marriage and families!

Rick Perry Partners With Group That Prays For Jews To Convert To Christianity

When Texas governor and potential presidential candidate Rick Perry announced that he was holding a prayer rally called The Response, co-hosted by the American Family Association, Right Wing Watch flagged the immense influence of another group, the International House of Prayer (IHOP), in organizing the event. Members of the IHOP leadership hold high-ranking positions in The Response’s leadership team, including Director of The Response Luis Cataldo, National Student Mobilization coordinator Dave Sliker, and program coordinators Jill Cataldo and Randy and Kelsey Bohlender. Mike Bickle, the director of IHOP, is also an official endorser of the event. IHOP is closely tied to a similar prayer rally known as The Call, whose head Lou Engle has used The Call to strongly denounce reproductive rights and homosexuality, support Uganda’s “kill-the-gays” bill among other anti-gay legislation, and engage in “spiritual warfare” against the Supreme Court.

IHOP also propagates an extreme but common view held in many Religious Right circles: that the Jewish people must convert to Christianity in order to bring about the return of Jesus Christ to Earth and the End Times. Many Religious Right groups and activists, including John Hagee, another endorser of The Response, believe that the End Times will only be fulfilled once enough Jews leave their faith and become Christians.

In fact, IHOP made a video that asked people to prayer for Jews to convert to Christianity, because “He will return only when Israel is ready and willing to receive Him as their savior and king. When He returns, the entire nation of Israel will be saved.” Much like the spokesman for The Response who said that he wants members of all faiths to “seek out the living Christ” at Perry’s rally, IHOP urges members to pray for Jews to accept the Gospel:

The nation of Israel – God’s chosen people. Believers are commanded in the Bible to pray for this nation, but why? It’s true that God wants to bring forth a people from every tribe, tongue, and nation, neither Jew nor Gentile to worship before his throne, but when it comes to Israel, is there something more? Yes. God has not finished with Israel. The eternal covenant promises of God to Israel still stand.

It is through Israel that God will establish His kingdom on the Earth in fullness, and through whom, He will bring blessing to every nation. Jesus is returning to the Earth to rule as the Jewish king from Jerusalem on the throne of David.

He will return only when Israel is ready and willing to receive Him as their savior and king. When He returns, the entire nation of Israel will be saved.

The attack against Israel will escalate as we approach the End Times, with an increase in global anti-Semitism, culminating in a united political and military assault against the city of Jerusalem. For this reason, it is critical that the people of God come into agreement with God’s purpose for Israel, and take their stand in the place of prayer.

So, how should we pray? Scripture tells us to pray for two cities: our own city, and for the peace of Jerusalem. We must pray, first and foremost, for spiritual peace, that the Gospel would go forth with power among the Jewish people both globally and in the land.

We must pray for the Lord to raise up anointed, prophetic witnesses to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, for it will be through the Gentiles, Paul says, that Israel will be provoked to jealousy. We must also join our prayers with those of believers in the land, praying that God would raise up an anointed witness to Yeshua in the land of Israel. We must pray for social peace in the land of Israel, both relationally and economically.

Finally, we must pray for political peace. There can be no true political peace until Jesus rules as king from Jerusalem, but until that time, we must pray for the safety of believers, the safety of the land from every demonic attack, that the Gospel might go forth with power.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • Judd Legum @ Think Progress: Santorum: Poor History Scores A Result Of ‘Conscious Effort’ By ‘The Left’ To Keep Students Uninformed.
  • Dahlia Lithwick @ Slate: Class Dismissed: The Supreme Court Decides That The Women Of Wal-Mart Can’t Have Their Day In Court.
  • TNR: Rick Perry: Why His Texas Record Is Much Worse Than You Think.

Religious Right Intensifies The Fight Against Gay-Straight Alliances

After Education Secretary Arne Duncan sent a letter declaring that Gay-Straight Alliances and similar groups are protected under the 1984 Equal Access Law, which was passed with the help of Religious Right activists, the Religious Right was unsurprisingly enraged. Many anti-gay organizations forcefully oppose the creation of such clubs, and the Family Research Council even urged schools to encourage clubs that support ex-gay therapy. Now, American Principles In Action (APIA) is denouncing Duncan’s letter as a threat to “the innocence” of children.

APIA is the political arm of the American Principles Project, an anti-gay group that is best known for launching the boycott of the Conservative Political Action Conference over the participation of GOProud and the alleged sidelining of the social conservatives. Even though APIA took on leading conservative groups with its CPAC boycott, recently presidential candidates Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Gary Johnson and Rick Santorum signed up for their Iowa “Tea Party Bus Tour.”

In a statement, the APIA charged Secretary Duncan with bullying for supporting students who want to form clubs that actively fight school bullying and harassment. The group instead claimed that it was part of the Obama Administration’s “sexual agenda” and need to “pander to the gay lobby,” requesting the Supreme Court overrule the decision:

Today, American Principles in Action (APIA) criticized Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan for another attempt to bully local schools into accepting the Administration’s sexual agenda. On June 14, he sent a “Dear Colleague” letter notifying schools across the country that they are prohibited from denying the formation of “Queer-Straight” and “Gay-Straight” Alliance groups.

“This is a situation where local school boards have been making their own decisions about how to protect the students entrusted to their care,” said Andy Blom, Executive Director of APIA. “It is simply unacceptable for Sec. Duncan to push local school districts around and force them to accept their sexual agenda, especially when case law is so conflicted on the issue.”

In his letter, Secretary Duncan backed up his decision by citing a July 2008 decision made in Gonzalez vs. School Board of Okeechobee County where a Florida federal judge prohibited the local school board from preventing a Gay-Straight Alliance Group from forming under the Equal Protection Act.



“What we really need is for the Supreme Court to weigh in to protect the ability of local school districts to manage the innocence of their children without interference from federal courts,” said Blom. “Instead, Sec. Duncan has used yet another opportunity to pander to the gay lobby. It is time for the Supreme Court and Congress to step forward and reign in this overaggressive Department of Education.”

Perry Reaches Out To Vander Plaats For Iowa Advice

As Governor Rick Perry ponders a run for the presidency, it is already clear that he doesn’t mind working with the most radical of anti-gay leaders. Perry’s The Response prayer rally is hosted by the American Family Association, whose spokesman Bryan Fischer wants to see homosexuality criminalized, and former activists with The Call, a prayer rally that defended Uganda’s 'kill-the-gays' bill. Other individuals working with The Response include militantly anti-gay leaders Jim Garlow, Cindy Jacobs, David Barton and David Welch.

Now, the Des Moines Register reports that Perry aides are reaching out to Bob Vander Plaats, the head of The Family Leader. Vander Plaats led the successful campaign to remove three Iowa Supreme Court justices who backed marriage equality and is closely linked to (and funded by) the AFA. Vander Plaats is also tied to an effort that likened being gay to being a cigarette smoker and once said that allowing equal marriage rights for gay couples threatened the system of private property and gun-ownership rights. One former adviser said that Vander Plaats is “obsessed with the gay marriage issue.”

Since Vander Plaats is a powerful Religious Right figure who has hosted presidential candidates like Michele Bachmann, Tim Pawlenty, Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, and Herman Cain, it is no surprise that Perry is in touch with him:

A supporter of possible presidential candidate Rick Perry of Texas telephoned an Iowa conservative leader today, inquiring about the political scene in Iowa.

“They were asking questions, asking my take on Iowa, how things are lining up and also making sure I know they like Rick Perry,” said Bob Vander Plaats, president of the Family Leader, an Iowa-based conservative advocacy group that’s hosting a presidential lecture series.



Vander Plaats said he has so far spoke with two Texans and one other out-of-stater, but declined to share their names because the conversations were intended to be private.

None of the callers included Perry’s political strategist Dave Carney, or anyone who currently works for Perry, he said. “They’re just people that are around him and they think he’d be good for the race,” Vander Plaats said.

Farah: Criminalize Homosexuality Just Like Murder, Child Molestation

Joseph Farah, the editor of WorldNetDaily, laments about the gains of the gay-rights movement. According to Farah, the Lawrence v. Texas decision which said that state anti-sodomy laws were unconstitutional was a tragedy for the country because it effectively stopped states from criminalizing sin. He claims that “from murder, to theft, to adultery, to child molestation,” people have “the right and the duty” to make laws banning “sinful behavior,” including sodomy. He insists that gay people and their allies are simply inventing new rights and that the LGBT community is only using the marriage debate “to demonstrate they are ‘oppressed’” because they have “no real interest in marriage”:

Take a 5,000-year-old institution ordained by God that has worked all over the world and trash it because some a group of sinful, prideful people with no real interest in marriage wants to use it to demonstrate they are "oppressed."

Keep in mind, it was the federal government that made all this inevitable with the Supreme Court case Lawrence v. Texas, in which it presumed to tell the people of that great republic they had no business enforcing laws against sodomy. Justice Antonin Scalia predicted in short order the ruling would open the door to something unimaginable a decade ago – same-sex marriage. He was right.

That's how sodomy moved from being a sin 10 years ago to being a "right."

It's not a right. It's a sin. And, in a civilized, self-governing society, when the majority of people ban sinful behavior – from murder, to theft, to adultery, to child molestation – they have the right and the duty to legislate against it. Courts have no business overruling the will of the people on such matters by dreaming up "rights" that are to be found nowhere in the Constitution, the Bible or the history of mankind.

WND: Conservatives Losing Marriage Debate Because They Weren't Anti-Gay Enough

Only a writer for the ultraconservative WorldNetDaily would believe that the Religious Right is too soft on the issue of gay rights.

WND’s Josh Craddock of the Institute for Cultural Communicators claims that the reason more Americans support marriage equality is because social conservatives haven’t fought gay rights or attacked the LGBT community enough. Responding to Focus on the Family president Jim Daly’s recent claim that the Right Wing “probably lost” the debate over equal marriage rights, Craddock alleges that organizations like Focus on the Family simply didn’t fight gay rights hard enough.

He points to the case of the campaign for Colorado’s Amendment 2, the unconstitutional law that barred anti-discrimination ordinances from covering gays and lesbians, protections that anti-gay activists said granted “special rights” and ceded too much ground to the gay-rights movement. Craddock argues that Religious Right activists should have more vigorously and forcefully opposed the decriminalization of homosexuality and letting anyone who was gay or sympathizes with gay rights from serving in public office:

Rewind to 1992's Colorado campaign on Amendment 2, designed to ban homosexuals from receiving special rights based on their sexual orientation. It was then that Dr. James Dobson and the vice president of public policy for Focus on the Family, Tom Minnery, adopted the unwise but politically opportunistic pro-Amendment 2 campaign slogan "Equal rights, not special rights." If homosexuals are entitled to "equal rights," then why should homosexual couples be prohibited from marrying? Focus on the Family lost the gay-marriage debate in 1992 when they broke with 3,500 years of Judeo-Christian history and sided with Hillary, Hollywood and the humanists by legitimizing homosexual behavior.

Incidentally, that victory was short-lived. It was overturned in Romer v. Evans (1996) with the help of a prominent Washington, D.C., lawyer who specialized in oral arguments before the Supreme Court. Less than a decade later, Dr. Dobson actually supported that attorney's bid to become the nation's next chief justice. In 2005, John Roberts was confirmed to the Supreme Court.

Most recently, Focus on the Family announced that they wouldn't oppose a homosexual nominated to the Supreme Court over sexual orientation. A spokesperson for the organization commented in 2009 that the nominee's sexual orientation "should never come up" because "it's not even pertinent to the equation." Not even relevant to know if an individual appointed for life to the highest court in the nation has a traditional view of the family, or is a self-avowed homosexual? Where did that come from? Certainly America's Founding Fathers would be shocked, since they followed lock-step with Christian Western tradition that criminalized homosexuality.

Today's conservative Christian leaders believe what was scandalous just 30 years ago: that homosexuality should be legal. Back in the Dark Ages, way back in 1986 when the Supreme Court upheld Georgia's anti-sodomy law, Christian leaders actually believed that homosexual behavior should be criminal. Their beliefs have changed rather quickly with the culture, preferring to garner social acceptance through a moral fluidity that reminds me of Groucho Marx's quip: "If you don't like my principles, I have others."

Despite victories for traditional marriage in states across the Union, social conservatives are losing because they've missed the heart of the issue. Same-sex marriage is a diversion. The real battle is over the morality of homosexuality itself.

Rick Perry Teams Up With AFA For Call-Like Prayer Rally

Reuters reports that Texas Governor Rick Perry has teamed up with the American Family Association to launch his own Lou Engle-like all day prayer rally:

Saying "there is hope for America, and we will find it on our knees," Texas Governor Rick Perry has invited other governors to join him in a "solemn gathering of prayer and fasting" in August in Houston, according to the event's website.

Perry, who said recently he is considering a run for the Republican nomination to contest the presidency in 2012 against Barack Obama, has frequently made calls for prayer while governor.

"I sincerely hope you'll join me in Houston on August 6th and take your place in Reliant Stadium with praying people asking for God's forgiveness, wisdom and provision," Perry wrote in materials promoting the event, called "The Response, a Call to Prayer for a Nation in Crisis."

A message on the event's website says it is in response to a historic crisis and calls it "a non-denominational, apolitical Christian prayer meeting," with the goal "to rise up and make a sound that will be heard in heaven."

The site says Perry "has invited all US governors as well as many other national and Christian political leaders."

"Right now, America is in crisis," Perry says in a message on the site. "We have been besieged by financial debt, terrorism, and a multitude of natural disasters. As a nation, we must come together, and call upon Jesus to guide us..."

Perry's spokeswoman could not be reached for comment on the August event on Sunday.

Eric Bearse, a spokesman for The Response, said on Sunday: "The governor told the American Family Association about a month ago that we need to call Americans together for a time of prayer."

Bearse said the Mississippi-based American Family Association, a conservative Christian activist group, is paying for the event, and admission will not be charged.

According to the event website, the prayer rally will take place at Reliant Stadium in Houston and last from 10 am to 5 pm and will feature Don Wildmon and Buddy Smith of the American Family Association, Jim Garlow of Renewing American Leadership, David Lane, who was involved in the effort to remove the Supreme Court Justices in Iowa and is behind the various "Restoration Project" events across America, former Congressmen Bob McEwen, as well as several leaders associated with Lou Engle and/or the International House of Prayer in Kansas City.

Will Money Help Gingrich Win Over The Religious Right?

The Wall Street Journal today features an extensive profile on Newt Gingrich’s vast network of political organizations, including American Solutions, Renewing American Leadership (ReAL), and Gingrich Productions. The paper reports that Gingrich’s “network has amassed more than 1.7 million voter and donor contacts and raised $32 million between 2009 and 2010—more than all his potential 2012 rivals combined.” Gingrich also helped steer $150,000 to American Family Association Action to help defeat three Iowa State Supreme Court justices that ruled in favor of marriage equality. Along with ReAL, which is led by anti-gay activist Jim Garlow, and his support for the AFA, Gingrich has made overtures to other Religious Right groups and leaders including John Hagee, Bryan Fischer, Janet Porter, Liberty University, Liberty Counsel, The Family Leader and the Minnesota Family Council.

But will Gingrich’s financial influence, religious documentaries and appeals to prominent Religious Right figures translate to real support from activists who might be wary of backing a thrice-married adulterer? Fischer remains a skeptic, but Iowa’s Bob Vander Plaats, who coordinated the anti-judge campaign, is still grateful for Gingrich’s significant monetary aid:

Mr. Gingrich hasn't run a truly competitive campaign in 21 years. He is given to public gaffes, most recently criticizing President Barack Obama for failing to back the rebels fighting Col. Moammar Gadhafi, only to reverse himself after Mr. Obama ordered U.S. planes into Libya. He resigned from Congress in 1998 under an ethics cloud, after his party suffered a historic midterm loss. It was later revealed that he was having an affair with a congressional aide.

Even groups that have allied with him, such as the conservative American Family Association, aren't poised to back him, citing his two messy divorces and three marriages. "He is brilliant, and has much to offer. But he isn't what we need in the Oval Office," said the AFA's director of issue analysis, Bryan Fischer.



Wearing an array of organizational hats, he has met repeatedly with pastors, trained local candidates, consulted with doctors on his proposed health-care innovations and met with local refiners to tout ethanol. After raising money through one of his groups, Mr. Gingrich funneled $150,000 in seed money to a successful campaign last fall to oust three Iowa Supreme Court judges who supported gay marriage.

"Newt's role was quiet and very low key, but it was pivotal," said Bob Vander Plaats, a well-known Iowa conservative who led the anti-judges campaign.



The heavy emphasis on religion is part of his long push to atone for his multiple divorces, according to people who know him. "He was very direct about this," said Rev. Brad Sherman, a prominent Iowa evangelical leader, recounting a session Mr. Gingrich had last year with a small group of Iowa religious leaders. "He said he had deep regrets, and asked our forgiveness."

Fact Checking Barton Part III: First Amendment

Towards the very end of the televised portion of David Barton’s interview on The Daily Show, Barton said that one of the cases he “did at the US Supreme Court was rabbi Leslie Gutterman was asked in Providence Rhode Island to give a prayer at a graduation, and he wasn’t allowed to, now tell me how “Congress should make no law’ means that a rabbi cant say the word ‘God’ at a prayer.” He claims that this poses that the first Amendment is misused by putting a restriction on individuals, rather than government.

He referred to the case of a Rhode Island rabbi who was invited to deliver a prayer at a public school graduation to demonstrate that the Constitution is being misapplied to stifle religious expression. But it was the public school, not the rabbi (Gutterman), that was the defendant in the Supreme Court case Lee v. Weisman. Robert Lee was the principal of the school who invited the rabbi and Daniel Weisman’s daughter was the graduating student at the school who objected to the prayer service.

In the following section, that was posted only online, Barton dismisses fears that people could be coerced into prayer in schools, saying, “there’s coercion, you have to pull on your big boy pants and do something” and “look at all the pressure that goes to school anyway, there’s drugs and everything else and we don’t rule that unconstitutional.”

Barton misconstrues the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause, which is incorporated to the states through the Fourteenth Amendment (see Everson and Cantwell), and calls the ruling a “pretty strange parsing of the Constitution” and places a “restriction on the rights of people to say the word God in public.”

As Justice Kennedy writes in the majority opinion, which decided that the school is barred from holding a prayer service during the graduation ceremony, the First Amendment has been interpreted to prevent the government from sanctioning or endorsing religion:

The First Amendment’s Religion Clauses mean that religious beliefs and religious expression are too precious to be either proscribed or prescribed by the State. The design of the Constitution is that preservation and transmission of religious beliefs and worship is a responsibility and a choice committed to the private sphere, which itself is promised freedom to pursue that mission. It must not be forgotten, then, that, while concern must be given to define the protection granted to an objector or a dissenting nonbeliever, these same Clauses exist to protect religion from government interference.

As Stewart notes, Barton completely neglects the rights of the students whose beliefs are compromised by the school-sanctioned prayer by putting the burden on the student to just put up with it. Kennedy writes that such thinking “turns conventional First Amendment analysis on its head. It is a tenet of the First Amendment that the State cannot require one of its citizens to forfeit his or her rights and benefits as the price of resisting conformance to state-sponsored religious practice.”

Barton grounds his beliefs that the majority should trump the rights of the minority in his view that the First Amendment actually doesn’t prevent the state from endorsing religion. Lauri Lebo writes in The Devil in Dover that in Barton’s book The Myth of Separation,

Barton argues in his book that the First Amendment only refers to the establishment of a specific Protestant denomination. In other words, Barton claims that Christian founders were saying they couldn’t endorse Lutheranism, for instance, over Presbyterianism. But in Barton’s view, forcing Christian beliefs on the nation’s citizens has always been fair game.

But the drafters actually rejected proposed amendments that only stopped governmental recognition of denominations or sects. Warren Throckmorton, a professor at Grove City College, a Christian school, pointed to James Madison’s speech during the debate over the First Amendment where he makes clear that “Congress should not establish a religion, and enforce the legal observation of it by law” for otherwise they could pass laws that “might infringe the rights of conscience and establish a national religion.”

By ignoring the meaning behind the First Amendment and opposing the First Amendment’s incorporation to the states under the Fourteenth Amendment, Barton pushes a radical version of the Constitution. If “taken to logical conclusion,” Throckmorton notes, “this argument would establish Christianity as the religion of the nation, something the Founders specifically did not do.”

Religious Right Reacts To Law Firm’s Decision To Withdraw From DOMA Defense

Today, the law firm King & Spalding decided against defending the Defense Of Marriage Act on behalf of the House of Representatives, leading Paul Clement, the partner who was going to take charge of DOMA’s defense, to resign . Groups and leaders opposed to marriage equality are unsurprisingly irate at King & Spalding, and have found a new hero in Clement:

Brian Brown, National Organization for Marriage:

Brown contrasted Clement’s courageous stand for integrity with the cowardice of King & Spalding Chairman Robert Hays. “In contrast to the principled stand by Paul Clement, King & Spalding, through their Chairman Robert Hays, has demonstrated a shocking lack of professional ethics and shown cowardice under fire. This law firm has shown itself to be without principle,” Brown said. “Representing clients who may be unpopular in some quarters is what lawyers do. The actions of King & Spalding would suggest that they believe an accused murderer is entitled to a vigorous defense, but the thousands-year old understanding of marriage is not, even though our marriage law was passed with overwhelming bi-partisan majorities and signed into law by President Clinton.”

NOM pledged an investigation into the actions of King & Spalding and urged its supporters to contact Hays to express their outrage over the firm’s decision. “We will convene a panel of legal experts and ethicists to determine if any rules of professional conduct have been violated, or if the firm has acted illegally in reaching their decision. We already know they have violated the moral imperative of acting in good faith and fair dealing. If our review concludes that the firm has violated any statutes or rules of professional conduct, we will initiate the appropriate disciplinary complaints,” Brown said.

Tony Perkins, Family Research Council:

"We commend Paul Clement for standing firm in the face of homosexual activists who seek to censor any opposition - even in the courtroom - to their campaign to overturn the marriage laws of 45 states.

"It is a shocking revelation that King & Spalding would rather lose their most brilliant and talented Supreme Court lawyer than confront a smear campaign by homosexual activists.



"The truth is not afraid of a good debate. What are homosexual activists afraid of? If they are right, then they should welcome a robust legal argument. We are convinced that the truth will win out in the end and DOMA will be upheld as constitutional. A person who doesn't want his opponent to have a good lawyer is an opponent who knows that the law isn't on his side.

"We call on President Obama and the U.S. Congress to denounce these unacceptable smear and silence tactics. The American people and our system of justice deserve better."

Mat Staver, Liberty Counsel:

Mat Staver, founder of Liberty Counsel and dean of Liberty University School of Law, says Clement is demonstrating legel "class and integrity" -- and that the decision by King & Spaulding was an incorrect move. "Where we see this clash coming between homosexuality and religious rights or other rights or just simply common sense and civility, I think we're seeing it played out right there in the King & Spalding law firm," he tells OneNewsNow.

Staver says because of certain political complaints from branches within the law firm, King & Spaulding decided to drop the case. "That, I think, illustrates the clash of the homosexual agenda, and the frank intolerance that we see manifested in some of the individuals pushing that agenda."

Jay Sekulow, American Center for Law and Justice:

Paul Clement is an honorable advocate. He understands that when an attorney engages a client, and agrees to defend a position in court, that is what he must do. We applaud his efforts to move forward in defending DOMA - now with another law firm.

We know that Paul will provide a sound and thorough defense to DOMA, which we expect to be upheld by the courts. We will file an amicus brief defending DOMA as the case unfolds.

We applaud Paul's commitment to the legal profession, his integrity, and his desire and dedication to carry out his professional responsibilities in this case.

Barber Claims Isabella Miller Will Become A "Trophy Child" For "The Gay Agenda"

As Kyle just posted, new developments in the kidnapping of Isabella Miller point to the possible complicity of Mat Staver’s Liberty Counsel, whose lawyer Rena Lindevaldsen is representing Lisa Miller. According to the FBI affidavit, Miller is living in a house owned by the father of Staver’s administrative assistant. Matt Barber, Liberty Counsel’s Director of Cultural Affairs, has consistently attacked Miller’s former partner Janet Jenkins and the courts. Staver, Lindevaldesn and Barber are all also professors at Liberty University School of Law.

Earlier this week, Barber said that a recent ruling in Louisiana that upheld the state’s refusal to issue a birth certificate including both of the names of the two men who were adopting a child born in the state would bolster Miller’s case. Referring to Jenkins, who was awarded custody of Isabella, Barber said that Liberty Counsel is attempting to protect Lisa and Isabella Miller “from this homosexual activist woman who wants this trophy child to hold up as an advancement of the gay agenda.”

Watch: 

So this is great in the court, in ruling on this, said ‘the full faith and credit clause does not oblige Louisiana to confer particular benefits on unmarried parents contrary to its law.’ My hope is that the Virginia Supreme Court, as we continue on with our case with Lisa Miller, that eventually they will look to this federal ruling. I think this gives cover to other federal judges as we continue fighting on behalf of Lisa and Isabella Miller, to protect them from this homosexual activist woman who wants this trophy child to hold up as an advancement of the gay agenda.

Iowa GOP Tries To Impeach State Supreme Court Over Marriage Equality

After the Religious Right’s successful campaign, with massive funding from Newt Gingrich, to remove three state Supreme Court justices in the 2010 elections who backed marriage equality, now the Iowa GOP is pushing for the impeachment of the remaining justices. Bob Vander Plaats, the anti-gay activist who led the drive to remove the Justices and heads The Family Leader, has previously called for the resignation of the entire Supreme Court and advocated for their removal over the marriage equality ruling in Varnum v. Brien. He is also building ties with likely presidential candidates as Gingrich, Tim Pawlenty, Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul and Herman Cain have either addressed or plan to speak during The Family Leader’s “presidential lecture series.”

Despite the heightened activism of the state’s social conservatives, Lynda Waddington of the Iowa Independent reports that the impeachment resolution faces an uphill battle:

Iowa House Republicans drew an immediate negative reaction late Thursday when they filed four articles of impeachment, one for each remaining member of the Iowa Supreme Court that participated in an April 2009 decision that struck down a legislative ban on same-sex marriage as a violation of the state’s equal protection clause.

The four House resolutions target Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Cady (HR 48) and Justices Brent Appel (HR 47), Daryl Hecht (HR 49) and David Wiggins (HR 50) for “malfeasance in office” specifically for their ruling in the Varnum v. Brien case, saying that each justice “exercis[ed] functions properly belonging to the legislative and executive departments.” …

The articles of impeachment drafted and filed by the five legislators were also immediately attacked by Justice Not Politics, a nonpartisan group that formed in advance of the 2010 retention election in hopes of bolstering support for the three justices on the November ballot and to stress the non-political nature of the Iowa Judicial Branch.



Opposition to retention was led by Bob Vander Plaats, who formed Iowa for Freedom following an unsuccessful GOP gubernatorial primary bid. The ouster movement was well financed by out-of-state anti-gay interest groups. Currently, Vander Plaats is employed as head of The Family Leader organization, which has traveled the state in hopes of “building on the momentum” of the November ousters.

The three ousted justices were replaced by Gov. Terry Branstad in February, following a winnowing of candidates by the State Judicial Nominating Commission.

Although Republicans hold a majority in the Iowa House, it remains doubtful that the articles of impeachment will live beyond their referral to the Judiciary Committee.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Texas Governor Rick Perry has issued a proclamation urging residents to pray for rain.
  • Read through this and tell me exactly where Ralph Reed "takes on the liberal media."
  • FRC is mobilizing activists to urge the Supreme Court to accept the case of Davenport v. American Atheists.
  • Speaking of FRC, Peter Sprigg is upset with proposed curriculum in Maryland that doesn't show gays as perverted miserable freaks.
  • Know how the Religious Right is always going on about European countries are shutting down the rights of Christians?
  • Finally, the quote of the day from Ken Hutcherson: "The Babylonian empire failed, the Persian Empire failed, the Greek Empire failed, and the Roman Empire was dispersed when the people failed to remember what made them great. The common denominator for the failure of all these world powers was the breakdown of the family." Really?  I'd really like to see some documentation for this claim.

Whalen: Vacate Walker's Proposition 8 Decision

Ed Whalen is back with another nonsensical article, arguing in the National Review that since Judge Vaughn Walker, who was appointed by George H. W. Bush, is openly gay, his decision to overturn Proposition 8 should be vacated and he should have been disqualified from ruling on the case in the first place. Using Whalen’s logic, white judges should be barred from ruling on cases involving white people, female judges should not be allowed to rule on cases involving women, and Jewish judges should be prohibited from ruling on cases involving Jews or Judaism:

In taking part in the Perry case, Judge Walker was deciding whether Proposition 8 would bar him and his same-sex partner from marrying. Whether Walker had any subjective interest in marrying his same-sex partner — a matter on which Walker hasn’t spoken — is immaterial under section 455(a). (If Walker did have such an interest, his recusal also would be required by other rules requiring that a judge disqualify himself when he knows that he has an “interest that could be substantially affected by the outcome of the proceeding.”) Walker’s own factual findings explain why a reasonable person would expect him to want to have the opportunity to marry his partner: A reasonable person would think that Walker would want to have the opportunity to take part with his partner in what “is widely regarded as the definitive expression of love and commitment in the United States.” A reasonable person would think that Walker would want to decrease the costs of his same-sex relationship, increase his wealth, and enjoy the physical and psychological benefits that marriage is thought to confer.



Now that Walker has finally disclosed facts that would have warranted his disqualification from Perry, the appropriate remedy is for the Ninth Circuit — or, if necessary, the Supreme Court — to vacate Walker’s judgment upon a request by Prop 8 proponents. As the Supreme Court ruled more than two decades ago in Liljeberg v. Health Services Acquisition Corp. (1988), where a district judge has violated section 455(a) by deciding a case that he should have disqualified himself from, it is “appropriate to vacate the judgment unless it can be said that [the losing party] did not make a timely request for relief, or that it would otherwise be unfair to deprive the prevailing party of its judgment.” In that case, the losing party did not learn of the facts requiring disqualification until ten months after the court of appeals had affirmed the district court’s judgment, so the question was whether the judgment that had become final on appeal should nonetheless be set aside. The Court found the request for relief to be timely, as the delay was attributable to the judge’s failure to disclose the facts requiring disqualification. A request now by Prop 8 proponents to vacate Walker’s judgment would indisputably be timely (and would clearly not involve any unfairness to the Perry plaintiffs), as the appeal on the merits is still pending, and Walker has only now revealed the information requiring his disqualification.

Santorum To Join The Family Leader In Iowa

Bob Vander Plaats’s The Family Leader just announced that Rick Santorum will join them for two events in early May. The Family Leader is an obsessive, militantly anti-gay organization that wants to remove the entire Iowa Supreme Court for ruling in favor of marriage equality. Already, likely presidential candidates Michele Bachmann, Tim Pawlenty and Ron Paul have joined Vander Plaats for his religious right group’s Presidential Lecture Series, and Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain plan to address the group this summer:

The goal of the Presidential Lecture Series is to provide an educational platform whereby Iowans can learn about the pro-family vision of national leaders.

Come and hear the pro-family lecture of former Senator Rick Santorum on Monday, May 2, 2011.

University of Iowa Iowa Memorial Union - Ballroom 125 N. Madison St., Iowa City, IA 52242 9:00 AM

Pella Christian High School, 300 Eagle Lane, Pella, IA 50219 Vermeer Auditorium 12:30 PM

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann Dordt College, 498 4th Ave. NE, Sioux Center, IA 51250 Campus Center 4:30 PM

Come hear the following leaders on these upcoming dates:
June 6 - Herman Cain
July 11 - Speaker Newt Gingrich
August - TBA
September - TBA
October - TBA

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Supreme Court Posts Archive

Brian Tashman, Wednesday 06/26/2013, 1:10pm
American Family Association president Tim Wildmon and radio host Sandy Rios have maintained a miserable mood on American Family Radio today after the Supreme Court’s decision on DOMA. Rios argued that the gay rights “freight train” will compel Christians “to bow the knee or to be crushed.” “This is going to get rough,” Rios said, “they are going to infringe on each of us, our children [and] our jobs.” Later, Wildmon said that “this is a very sad day in our country” because “this is America shaking its fist at God almighty... MORE
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 06/26/2013, 11:50am
Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS), a staunch opponent of gay rights, warned that the Supreme Court’s ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act will harm children. Speaking at a Heritage Foundation summit today, Huelskamp claimed that “children will be hurt” by the “radical” decision and accused the justices of having “substituted their personal views on marriage for the constitutional decisions of the American voters and their elected representatives.” Watch: MORE
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 06/26/2013, 10:55am
American Family Association spokesmen Fred Jackson and Sandy Rios were despondent while reacting to the Supreme Court’s decision striking down the Defense of Marriage Act. “It’s a big win for gay activists today,” Rios said, “it’s not a good day for us.” “They kept shouting DOMA's dead, I thought that was pretty metaphorical, marriage is dead too, for the future of this country,” she added. Jackson went even further and alleged that “God’s judgment will be upon us” as a result of the ruling. Watch: MORE
Peter Montgomery, Tuesday 06/25/2013, 10:38pm
While civil rights leaders are denouncing the 5-4 Supreme Court decision gutting the Voting Rights Act, the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins is cheering.  In an email alert sent at the end of the day on Tuesday, Perkins says, “With help from the U.S. Supreme Court, America may finally be turning a page on the racial politics that have haunted our last 50 years.”  Oh, yes, giving a green light to the kind of blatantly discriminatory voter disenfranchisement efforts that we’ve seen in recent elections is certainly going to help America “turn the... MORE
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 06/25/2013, 6:15pm
PFAW Foundation: Court Conservatives in Shelby County v. Holder Deal Terrible Blow to the Voting Rights Act.  Ari Berman @ The Nation: What the Supreme Court Doesn’t Understand About the Voting Rights Act.  Sergio Munoz @ Media Matters: Right-Wing Media Cover Up Supreme Court's Unprecedented Blow To Voting Rights.  Jessica Mason Pieklo @ RH Reality Check: Justices Alito and Kennedy Mansplain Away Your Rights.  Slate: Watch as a State Senator Wages an Epic Filibuster to Block Sweeping New Abortion Restrictions. Irin Carmon @... MORE
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 06/25/2013, 5:35pm
Bryan Fischer is joining his American Family Association colleague Gary Glenn in calling on states to simply ignore any Supreme Court ruling that strikes down bans on same-sex marriage. Fischer even argues that it would be unconstitutional to follow a court decision that favors marriage equality, which he claims would effectively remove “We the people” from the Constitution. Anything short of upholding DOMA, anything short of upholding Prop 8 in California will be a setback for the rule of law, it will be a setback for a constitutional form of government; in fact you can just... MORE
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 06/25/2013, 4:30pm
Family Research Council head Tony Perkins yesterday chatted with Tim Wildmon of the American Family Association on Today’s Issues to discuss the Supreme Court’s imminent decisions on Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act. Perkins warned that if the Proposition 8 is overturned, then the “legitimacy of the court” will be called into question. Despite all evidence pointing to overwhelming support for marriage equality among young voters and heaviest resistance among seniors, Perkins said in reference to gay rights advocates that “time is not on their side.... MORE