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Dozens of GOP Leaders Declare Solidarity With Those Who Want To See Homosexuality Outlawed

Last week when Jeremy Hooper discovered that the Family Research Council was planning to roll out a campaign fighting back against the Southern Poverty Law Center's designation of the organization as an anti-gay hate group, we noted that FRC was asking people to sign on to the campaign to "stand in solidarity with Family Research Council, American Family Association, Concerned Women of America, National Organization for Marriage, Liberty Counsel and other pro-family organizations that are working to protect and promote natural marriage and family."

By doing so, we pointed out, any one who added their name was essentially declaring that they stood shoulder-to-shoulder with groups that proclaim:

Today, FRC announced that it was running this open letter [PDF] in both Politico and The Washington Examiner and that the effort had the support of dozens of Republican members of Congress and conservative leaders:

Family Research Council (FRC) announced the placement of a full-page open letter in today's print editions of Politico and the Washington Examiner responding to the Southern Poverty Law Center's (SPLC) recent attacks on FRC and other groups.

SPLC has targeted FRC and other organizations that uphold Judeo-Christian moral views, including marriage as the union of a man and a woman. The open letter, signed by more than 150 organizational leaders, Members of Congress and other elected officials, calls for a "vigorous but responsible exercise of the First Amendment rights of free speech and religious liberty that are the birthright of all Americans."

The open letter was signed by many current and former elected and government officials including Speaker-designate John Boehner, Majority Leader-elect Eric Cantor, U.S. Reps Mike Pence (R-IN), Michele Bachmann (R-MN), John Carter (R-TX), John Fleming (R-LA,) Trent Franks (R-AZ), Louie Gohmert (R-TX,) Gregg Harper (R-MS), Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Jim Jordan (R-OH), Steve King (R-IA,) Don Manzullo (R-IL), Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Joe Pitts (R-PA), Peter Roskam (R-LA), Lamar Smith (R-TX,) Steve Scalise (R-LA,) Fred Upton (R-MI), U.S. Senators Jim DeMint (R-SC), Jim Inhofe (R-OK,) David Vitter (R-LA), Roger Wicker (R-MS), Sam Brownback (Gov.-elect, Kansas), Governor Bobby Jindal, former Governor Mike Huckabee, Governor Tim Pawlenty, former Senator Rick Santorum, Edwin Meese III, former Attorney General of the United States, and Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.

For the record, here is the complete list of leaders who have publicly declared their solidarity with SPLC-designated anti-gay hate groups who want to see gays barred from serving in public office and homosexuality made illegal: 

Alaska Family Council Jim Minnery - President
American College of Pediatricians Tom Benton, MD - President
American Conservative Union Foundation Cleta Mitchell - Chairman
American Decency Association Bill Johnson - President
American Family Association Tim Wildmon - President
American Family Association of Pennsylvania Diane Gramley - President
American Principles Project Andresen Blom - Executive Director
American Values Gary Bauer - President
Association of Maryland Families Derek McCoy - President
Best-Selling Author and Host of Morning in America Dr. William J. Bennett
Calvary Chapel Jack Hibbs - Senior Pastor
Cardinal Newman Society Patrick Reilly - President
Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights Bill Donohue - President
CCV of Indiana PAC Joseph Sergio, Ph.D - Chairman
Center for Arizona Policy Cathi Herrod - President
Center for Law and Social Strategy Mark Spengler - Executive Director
Center for Security Policy Frank Gaffney - President and CEO
Center for Urban Renewal and Education Star Parker - President
Christian Civic League of Maine Carroll Conley - Executive Director
Christian Medical Association David Stevens - CEO
CitizenLink Tom Minnery - Senior Vice President, Public Policy
Citizens for Community Values Phil Burress - President
Citizens for Community Values of Indiana Patrick Mangan - Executive Director
CNSNews.com Chris Johnson - News Correspondant
CNSNews.com Eric Scheiner - Senior Video Producer
Coalition for Marriage and FamilyTom Shields - Chairman
Colorado Family Action Jessica Haverkate - Director
Committee for Justice Curt Levey - Executive Director
Concerned Citizens for Family Values of Connecticut Ray Kastner - President
Concerned Women For America Penny Nance - CEO
Concerned Women for American Wendy Wright - President
ConservativeHQ.com Richard Viguerie - Chairman
Coral Ridge Ministries Robert Knight - Senior Writer
Coral Ridge Ministries Hector Padron - Executive Vice President
Cornerstone Action, NH Kevin Smith - Executive Director
Cornerstone Family Council of ID Julie Lynde - Executive Director
Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation E. Calvin Beisner, Ph.D. - National Spokesman
Delaware Family Policy Council Nicole Theis - Executive Director
Design4 Marketing Communications Clint Cline - President
Eagle Forum Phyllis Schlafly - President
Ethics and Public Policy Center Rick Santorum - Senior Fellow
Faith Christian Fellowship Church The Rev Dr. R. Edgar Bonniwell - Senior Pastor
Family Action Council of Tennessee David Fowler - President
Family First (Nebraska FPC) Dave Bydalek Bydalek - Executive Director
Family Institute of Connecticut Peter Wolfgang - Executive Director
Florida Family Policy Counci lJohn Stemberger - President and General Counsel
ForAmerica David Bozell - Executive Director
Generals International Cindy Jacobs - President
Illinois Family Institute David Smith - Executive Director
Iowa Family Policy Center Chuck Hurley - President
Jews Offering New Alternatives to Homosexuality Elaine Silodor Berk - Director
Judicial Action Group Phillip Jauregui - President
Kansas Sam Brownback - Governor-elect
Kansas Family Policy Council Donna Lippoldt - Executive Director
Kingdom Warriors Ministry William Boykin - LTG(R) USArmy
Landmark Legal Foundation Mark Levin - President
Leadership Institute Morton Blackwell - President
Let Freedom Ring Colin Hanna - President
Liberty Center for Law and Policy Mandi Campbell - Legal Director
Liberty Counsel Matt Barber - Director of Cultural Affairs
Liberty Counsel Mathew Staver - Founder and Chairman
Liberty Institute Kelly Shackelford
Louisiana Bobby Jindal - Governor
Louisiana Family Forum Action Gene Mills - President
Massachusetts Family Institute Kris Mineau - President
Media Research Center Matthew Balan - news analyst
Media Research CenterL. Brent Bozell - Founder and President
Media Research Center Kyle Drennen - News Analyst
Media Research Center Matthew Hadro
Mike Huckabee - Former Governor, TV/ Radio Commentator
Minnesota Family Council David Eaton - Chairman
Minnesota Family Council John Helmberger - Chief Executive Officer
Mission America Linda Harvey - President
Missouri Family Policy Council Joe Ortwerth - Executive Director
National Organization for Marriage Brian Brown - President
National Organization for Marriage Maggie Gallagher - Chairman
National Organization for Marriage - Rhode Island Christopher Plante - Executive Director
National Review Rich Lowry - Editor
Nationally Syndicated Radio Talkshow Host Janet Parshall
Nevada Concerned Citizens Richard Ziser - Director
New Jersey Family First Len Deo - Founder & President
New Yorker's Family Research Foundation Rev. Tom Stiles
New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms Rev. Jason McGuire
North Dakota Family Alliance Tom Freier - Executive Director
Ohio Faith and Freedom Coalition Ken Blackwell - Chairman
Priests For LifeFr. Frank Pavone - National Director
Prison Fellowship and The Colson Center for Christian Worldview Chuck Colson - Founder
Public Service Research Foundation David Denholm - President
Radio America Franklin Raff - Sr. Executive Producer
Rappahannock Ventures WillIam Walton - Chairman
ReAL Action Rick Tyler - Chairman
RedState Erick-Woods Erickson - Editor
Renewing American Leadership Jim Garlow - Chairman
Republican Party of Louisiana Roger Villere, Jr. - Chairman
Restore America David Crowe - President
Retired Rensselaer Broekhuizen - Pastor
RightMarch.com William Greene - President
Shirley & Banister Public Affairs Diana Banister - Vice President
Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission Dr. Richard Land - President
State of Minnesota Tim Pawlenty - Governor
The American Spectator Alfred Regnery - Publisher
The Coalition of Conscience Michael Brown, Ph.D. - Director
The Diana Davis Spencer Foundation Abby Moffat - Vice President and COO
The Family Foundation of VirginiaVictoria Cobb - President
The Family Policy Council of WVJeremiah Dys, Esq. - President and General Counsel
The National Legal Foundation Steven Fitschen - President
THE New Voice, Inc.Herman Cain - CEO and President
The Oak InititativeRick Joyner - President
The Washington Examiner Mark Tapscott - Editorial Page Editor
TheCall Louis Engle - President
Tradition, Family, Property, Inc.C. Preston Noell III - President
Traditional Values Coalition Jody Hutchens - Regional Director
Traditional Values Coalition Andrea Lafferty - Executive Director
U.S. Congress Senator David Vitter - (R-LA)
U.S. Congress Senator Roger Wicker - (R-MS)
U.S. House of Representatives Congresswoman Michele Bachmann - (R-MN)
U.S. House of Representatives Speaker-designate John Boehner - (R-OH)
U.S. House of Representatives Majority Leader-elect Eric Cantor - (R-VA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman John Fleming, M.D. - (R-LA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Trent Franks - (R-AZ)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Louie Gohmert - (R-TX)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Jeb Henserling - (R-TX)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Jim Jordan - (R-OH)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Steve King - (R-IA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Donald Manzullo - (R-IL)
U.S. House of Representative sCongressman Kevin McCarthy - (R-CA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman-elect Alan Nunnelee - (R-MS)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Mike Pence - (R-IN)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Joe Pitts - (R-PA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Peter Roskam - (R-IL)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Steve Scalise - (R-LA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Lamar Smith - (R-TX)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Fred Upton - (R-MI)
United States SenateJim DeMint - Senator
Virginia Ken Cuccinelli - Attorney General
Western Center for Journalism Floyd Brown - President
Wisconsin Family Action Julaine Appling - President
WMtek Corp. Dan Pennell - CEO
WND.com Joseph Farah - Chief Executive Officer

Federalist Society Inspires NJ Justice To Refuse to Cast Votes

For 63 years, not one sitting New Jersey Supreme Court Justice who had sought to be re-appointed by the Governor had been refused ... until Gov. Chris Christie took office and decided to replace Justice John Wallace with a Republican nominee of his own.

That move did not sit well with the Democrats in the state Senate who announced that they would refuse to even consider confirming Christie's nominee, leading Chief Justice Stuart Rabner to appoint a senior judge of the appellate division to serve as a temporary justice in order to fill the vacant seventh seat.

And everything seemed fine until Justice Roberto Rivera-Soto, whose term expires in 2011, discovered an article from The Federalist Society [PDF] claiming that allowing the Chief Justice to fill this vacant seat is unconstitutional.

And now, inspired by this article, Rivera-Soto announced that he will refuse to participate in any more decisions because the current make-up of the court is unconstitutional:

In an unexpected action that rocked New Jersey's legal community Friday, New Jersey Supreme Court Justice Roberto A. Rivera-Soto declared he will abstain from the high court's decisions because he maintains Chief Justice Stuart Rabner did not have the constitutional power to appoint Judge Edwin Stern to temporarily fill a vacant seat on the seven-member panel.

...

In two routine decision made public Friday, Rivera-Soto stated it was not necessary to appoint a temporary justice, and that he is abstaining from decisions because the court's current makeup is unconstitutional. He argued that only the governor has the power to appoint a justice.

"The assignment of a Superior Court judge to serve on this court to fill a vacancy resulting from a political impasse between the executive and the legislative branches thrusts the judiciary into that political thicket, all the while improperly advancing one side's views in preference over the other's," Rivera-Soto wrote. "The Constitution, sober and reflective court practice, and everyday common sense each counsels against the foolhardy steps the court today takes."

Democrats in the state Senate are now demanding that Rivera-Soto resign from the court, accusing him of waging this stunt in an attempt to curry favor with Gov. Christie in hopes of being re-appointed when his term expires:

"Today's dissent from Justice Rivera-Soto shows contempt for the law, disregard for his fellow jurists and utter disdain for the right of New Jerseyans to have their cases heard by a full Court," [Senate President Stephen M.] Sweeney said. "It officially cements his place as the worst and most ethically challenged justice in the history of the modern judiciary.

"If he is so disinterested in fulfilling his constitutional duties, then he should step down and let the governor nominate and the Senate confirm a new justice who will actually participate in court matters," Sweeney said. "It's very telling that not one of his colleagues — nor any other jurist since 1947 — would agree with his cynical, transparent and politically motivated temper tantrum, which is either a hail-Mary attempt to curry favor among conservatives to save his own reappointment or an effort to undercut the state Supreme Court's authority on the eve of legislative redistricting.

"This isn't the first mistake Rivera-Soto's made since joining the Court, but it should be his last," Sweeney added.

...

Sen. Nicholas P. Scutari (D-Union) chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, also called on Rivera-Soto to resign.

"Justice Rivera-Soto's outright refusal to perform his judicial duties demonstrates a complete disregard for the position he holds and for the residents of this state," Scutari said. "The timing of his move is suspect. With his reappointment around the corner, this smacks of a desperate attempt to distract from his ethical lapses and grab the attention of right wing pundits who share a disdain for the court. This is an act of true arrogance. He is making an absolute mockery of the judiciary, and is clearly no longer fit to serve on the court. He should immediately step down."

Take a Stand With FRC and Those Who Want Homosexuality Criminalized

The Religious Right has been uniformly outraged ever since the Southern Poverty Law Center updated its list of anti-gay hate groups to include the likes of the Family Research Council and the American Family Association.

And today Jeremy Hooper discovered that they intend to do something more than just incessantly complain about it, as FRC is poised to launch a "Start Debating, Stop Hating" campaign designed to rally support for those groups who found themselves "slandered" by the SPLC: 

The surest sign one is losing a debate is to resort to character assassination. The Southern Poverty Law Center, a liberal fundraising machine whose tactics have been condemned by observers across the political spectrum, is doing just that.

The group, which was once known for combating racial bigotry, is now attacking several groups that uphold Judeo-Christian moral views, including marriage as the union of a man and a woman. How does the SPLC attack? By labeling its opponents “hate groups.” No discussion. No consideration of the issues. No engagement. No debate

These type of slanderous tactics have been used against voters who signed petitions and voted for marriage amendments in all thirty states that have considered them, as well as against the millions of Americans who identify with the Tea Party movement. Some on the Left have even impugned the Manhattan Declaration-which upholds the sanctity of life, the value of traditional marriage and the fundamental right of religious freedom-as an anti-gay document and have forced its removal from general communications networks.

This is intolerance pure and simple. Elements of the radical Left are trying to shut down informed discussion of policy issues that are being considered by Congress, legislatures, and the courts. Tell the radical Left it is time to stop spreading hateful rhetoric attacking individuals and organizations merely for expressing ideas with which they disagree. Our debates can and must remain civil - but they must never be suppressed through personal assaults that aim only to malign an opponents character.

You can take action by adding your name to the following statement:

We, the undersigned, stand in solidarity with Family Research Council, American Family Association, Concerned Women of America, National Organization for Marriage, Liberty Counsel and other pro-family organizations that are working to protect and promote natural marriage and family. We support the vigorous but responsible exercise of the First Amendment rights of free speech and religious liberty that are the birthright of all Americans.

Just let me point out to those thinking of adding their names to this statement that you are declaring your solidarity with people who proclaim that:

CPAC To Allow GOProud, John Birch Society to Continue Sponsorship

For the last few weeks, Religious Right groups have been pressuring CPAC organizers to drop the gay conservative group GOProud for the list of event co-sponsors and threatening to boycott next year's conference if GOP was allowed to participate.

The pressure prompted the American Conservative Union, which organizes CPAC, to put the issue before board members for a vote ... and CPAC has decided to allow both GOProud and the John Birch Society to participate:

Several socially conservative organizations have threatened to boycott one of the largest gatherings of conservative activists of the year if a group of gay Republicans is allowed to serve as a participating organization at the event.

Social conservatives, including the National Organization for Marriage among others, staged a walk-out at a meeting of board members of the Conservative Political Action Conference, according to multiple board members, to protest CPAC's decision to allow GOProud to join the event as more than just a vendor organization.

Those groups put enough pressure on the American Conservative Union, which runs CPAC, that officials put GOProud's fate, along with that of the ultra-conservative John Birch Society, up for a vote. Results made available to board members on Wednesday showed the board voted to allow both groups to continue their affiliation with CPAC.

That could send socially conservative groups packing and cause a rift in the CPAC board. GOProud has its enemies on the board of directors. Board member Cleta Mitchell is stridently opposed to allowing the gay group to participate and has led the charge to kick them out of the event, according to other board members.

This move will undoubtedly anger the many Religious Right groups who regularly participate in CPAC ... but that doesn't seem to particularly concern organizers:

CPAC organizers strongly suggest that this is overplayed. NOM, for example, is neither a board member -- there are only three of those, David Keene, Millie Hallow, and Cleta Mitchell -- or a participating organization of CPAC. "2010 was the first and only year they participated in CPAC," said CPAC director Lisa De Pasquale. "They have not registered for 2011 and have not attended any planning meetings." Participating organizations do not actually get votes on speakers, and while NOM has looked for help from the American Conservative Union's board, it's got only one like-minded GOProud critic -- Mitchell -- on the CPAC board.

Fischer: It Should Be Public Policy To Discourage and Eliminate Gay Sex

Bryan Fischer is actually on vacation this week and has had guest hosts filling in for him on his radio program.

So what is it that Fischer does while he is on vacation?  Apparently just look for news stories that he can cite to "support" his obsession with seeing gay sex criminalized.

Yesterday he cited an article about an adult film actor who contracted HIV to call for "appropriate sanctions" for those who engage in gay sex, and today he is citing an article on the dangers of smoking to claim that the government ought to be working to reduce, and eventually eliminate, gay sex:

As long as we’re on the subject of health, what the surgeon general did not say but should have is that the same is true of homosexual behavior: the first act of gay sex can be the one that kills you ... Smoking will cut six to seven years from the lifespan of the smoker, meaning a cigarette habit is less dangerous to human health and longevity than gay sex.

...

If a case can be made that cigarette smoking should be made illegal, a far better case can be made for making homosexual sex contrary to public policy, as it was in every state in the Union until 1962, and in 49 states until 1972. It’s still against the law in 12 states, although the Supreme Court, in another egregious act of judicial activism, prohibited states from governing themselves in this matter in the Lawrence ruling of 2003.

Now the surgeon general knows she can’t make it illegal in the current political climate, so she’ll settle for a vigorous effort to reduce the practice by sending a clear-cut, unambiguous message about smoking as a behavior. If you don’t smoke, don’t start. If you have started, stop.

Here’s an idea: since gay sex is more dangerous to human health than cigarette smoking, let’s make sure our public policies on both are the same.

I will be content at this juncture in American history for our public policy on homosexual conduct to be the same as our public policy on cigarette smoking, and for the same reason: the hazard they pose to public health.

The goal of the surgeon general’s office, since it can’t make smoking illegal, is to reduce the smoking rate from its current 20 percent to 12 percent by 2020.

We currently have between two and four percent of the population engaging in gay sex. How about we ask the surgeon general to launch a crusade to reduce the gay sex rate from four percent to one percent by 2020?

Says the surgeon general, in words that can and should be addressed to practicing homosexuals, “It's never too late to quit but the sooner you quit the better.”

In other words, the official administration policy on cigarette smoking is abstinence. Let’s make it the official government position on gay sex.

Just let me point out again that this is what Fischer does with his time while he is supposedly on vacation.

NOM Compares SPLC To Joseph McCarthy

If you think the Religious Right is over the fact that the Southern Poverty Law Center has added several new organizations to its list of anti-gay hate groups, think again.

Even though pretty much every group mentioned in the report has already weighed in to voice their outrage, activists continue to blast the SPLC, with the AFA of Pennsylvania accusing them of "attempting to silence" Christians and WorldNetDaily's Joseph Farah calling them a "marginal, fringe, extremist organization."

But the latest response from National Organization for Marriage really takes the cake, as Robert George compares the SPLC to Joe McCarthy while Maggie Gallagher complains that they are being treated like racists:

In a Nov. 29 e-mail to CNA, Princeton University law professor and National Organization for Marriage chairman emeritus Robert P. George compared the action to Sen. Joseph McCarthy’s smearing of opponents by accusing them of being communist sympathizers.

While the Law Center continues to do some good work in the area of civil rights, its “tarring” of those it opposes “reveals itself to have become an ideologically partisan organization bent on shutting down dissent by intimidating into silence those with whom it should be engaged in honest debate.”

...

Gallagher saw the Law Center’s action as a vindication of her past statements.

“I wish they would stop proving that we’re right so consistently. I’m not surprised. This is what I predicted would happen. I’m a little surprised it’s happening so fast.

“They believe you should be treated like a racist if you think marriage is a union of a man and a wife,” she said.

Asked to explain the difference between having racist views and having views opposed to homosexual acts, Prof. George said that debates about sexual ethics are about whether certain acts are “consistent with the dignity of human beings.”

However, this debate assumes “the equal and inestimable worth and dignity of all human beings” because it asks whether certain acts are worthy of them. Racist ideology rejects this, basing itself on “skin pigmentation” or other “morally irrelevant factors.”

“We need to face squarely the goals of this movement, the rhetoric of this movement, and the fact that this is an issue,” Gallagher remarked.

She added that Pope Benedict XVI and the Catholic bishops have made clear that “it doesn’t get better” if opponents of same-sex “marriage” stand down.

“The next fight is going to be whether or not our religious institutions and parents and schools are going to be stigmatized in the public square as racists, and face legal disabilities that racists face.”

Censorship-Advocate Bill Donohue’s History of Right Wing Demagoguery

Bill Donohue, President of the Catholic League, with allies such as House Republican leaders John Boehner and Eric Cantor and Fox News commentator Glenn Beck, succeeded in their multi-pronged attack to censor the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery’s “Hide/Seek” exhibit. They called on the Smithsonian to censor the work of artist David Wojnarowicz, whose work was meant “to depict the suffering of an AIDS victim” (side note: today is World AIDS Day). Even though the exhibit is completely supported by private funding, right wing leaders misleadingly portrayed “Hide/Seek” as a taxpayer funded exhibit. Donohue blasted the exhibit as “anti-Christian,” and ultimately the Smithsonian agreed to remove Wojnarowicz’s video.

Wojnarowicz is not the first target of Donohue’s fear-mongering, and he certainly won’t be Donohue’s last.

Right Wing Watch monitors Donohue’s extremism, and compiled some of his most extreme views on politics, religion, and the separation of church and state, in Bill Donohue: In His Own Words:

On Child Molestation

  • In response to then-Congressman Mark Foley’s efforts to defend his abusive conduct as having been molested by his priest as a child, he said “Most 15-year-old teenage boys wouldn’t allow themselves to be molested” and asked then-Congressman Mark Foley, “So why did you?
  • “Why did this young man not object earlier? Why did he allow the ‘abuse’ to continue until he was 18? The use of the quotes is deliberate: the charge against the former priest is not rape, but rubbing. While still objectionable, there is a glacial difference between being rubbed and raped.”
  • “No institution, religious or secular, has less of a problem with the issue of sexual abuse today than the Catholic Church.”

On Holidays

  • “There is something sick about Friendship Trees, Winter Solstice Concerts, Holiday Parades and Holly Day Festivals. The neutering of Christmas extends to the banishment of Nativity Scenes from the public square, the expulsion of baby Jesus from crèches not otherwise forbidden, the banning of red and green at school functions, the censoring of “Silent Night” at municipal concerts, etc…. By celebrating Christmas we are celebrating diversity. Don’t let the cultural fascists get their way this year.”
  • Cultural fascists invoke ‘diversity’ every December as cover for neutering Christmas—they never choose some other month to practice their multicultural religion. And by the way, who are these people from other religions who hate Christmas? I never met one. It would be more accurate to say that it’s precisely the persons who make this charge who hate Christmas.”

On Jews

  • “Hollywood is controlled by secular Jews who hate Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular. It‘s not a secret, OK? And I‘m not afraid to say it.
  • “None of the media distortions of this issue excuses those in the Jewish community who have lashed out at the pope. They should know better. Is their commitment to good relations with Catholics so thin that it can wither because of something like this? We certainly hope not.”

On “Jokes”

  • “I dealt with him earlier today on an MSNBC show, and I said we could hypothesize that there’d be a Columbia University pingpong team made of Asians, and somebody goes out there and says, ‘All gooks go home’….What about the gook jokes? I want to know, why don't you have a sense of humor about gook jokes?”

On Censorship

  • Led a campaign against Phillip Pullman’s books and the Golden Compass movie: "It's selling the virtues of atheism. The real person we want to get on this is Pullman. I don't want to see these books flying off the shelves at Christmas. I want them to be collecting dust."
  • Opposed Obama speaking at Notre Dame, saying the university’s president was “bestowing an honor on someone who supports selective infanticide”

On Progressives and Progressive Christians

  • “We need more, not fewer, Catholics on the Supreme Court. But not of the Ted Kennedy kind. We need more loyal sons and daughters.”
  • Called the director of Catholics for Choice “the biggest anti-Catholic bigot in the nation”
  • On Obama’s Catholic National Advisory Council, he said “If these are the best ‘committed Catholic leaders, scholars and advocates’ Obama can find, then it is evident that he has a ‘Wright’ problem when it comes to picking Catholic advisors.”
  • Regarding progressive Catholics, he said “it’s unfortunate that we have these people, I regard them as termites.”
  • Maintained that progressive Christians and “pro-abortion Nuns” are “no more Christian than the man in the moon.”
  • Referring to progressives, believes “today we are stuck with people who are cultural nihilists, they want to annihilate our society. They are intellectually and spiritually and morally bankrupt.”
  • “Indeed, the signature appetite of the left has always been power. Now, they are running up against the American people.”

On Obama

  • Compared Obama to leaders of the Soviet Union.

On Gays and Lesbians

  • “The idea of two men marrying is so bizarre and so anti-marriage that it is a great tribute to the American people that they continue to respect the right of gays to participate in American life without harassment while simultaneously rejecting the extremist gay agenda.”
  • “Their goal is not to contest the First Amendment rights of Catholics and others—their goal is to put religion on trial. What they are saying is that religious-based reasons for rejecting gay marriage are irrational, and thus do not meet the test of promoting a legitimate state interest.”
  • “We’re not going to allow gay people to adopt children, that’s against nature, it’s against nature’s god”
  • “They say we had a pedophilia problem, it’s been a homosexual problem all along.”
  • “The Times continues to editorialize about the ‘pedophilia crisis,’ when all along it’s been a homosexual crisis. Eighty percent of the victims of priestly sexual abuse are male and most of them are post-pubescent. While homosexuality does not cause predatory behavior, and most gay priests are not molesters, most of the molesters have been gay.
  • “Name for me a book publishing company in this country, particularly in New York, which would allow you to publish a book which would tell the truth about the gay death style.”
  • “Hollywood likes anal sex. They like to see the public square without nativity scenes. I like families. I like children. They like abortions. I believe in traditional values and restraint. They believe in libertinism.”

ADF Tried to Blame ACLU, AU for Its Unpopular Proposal

A few weeks back we took note of the on-going the controversy in King, North Carolina over the presence of a Christian flag that had been flying at a veteran's memorial in the city's Central Park.

City officials removed the flag as they tried to work out a constitutionally acceptable policy with the help of the Alliance Defense Fund.  The proposed solution that they hit upon is to create a lottery through which residents can request to fly any flag approved by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs at one week intervals. 

But, of course, the idea of allowing a non-Christian flag to fly at the memorial is simply unacceptable to some: 

Carlton McKinney, a Vietnam veteran who lives just outside of King, asked whether people who bought tiles to help pay for the Veteran’s Memorial can pull up those tiles if a religious flag is flown at the memorial that they object to.

“I don’t feel right having a brick there representing me and having another flag that’s not a Christian flag,” McKinney said.

Local residents clearly are not happy wtih the proposal and Joe Infranco, the ADF attorney assisting the town, responded by blaming the entire thing on the ACLU and Americans United:

“It is certain that not everyone will be happy about this,” Infranco said. “But the policy complies with the legal guidelines and will not assist your enemies if they filed a lawsuit.”

...

“I understand how angry you are,” Infranco said last night. “I think it is important that your anger be focused in the right direction.”

He repeatedly said that if city officials allowed the Christian flag to remain at the monument, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Americans United for the Separation of Church and State would sue the city and could probably win the lawsuit.

Then those groups would collect attorney fees from the city taxpayers, Infranco said.

Of course, those groups would win the lawsuit and collect fees because they are right and the current policy is unconstitutional. 

But instead of simply informing the residents of King of that, Infranco tried to place the blame for the situation entirely on the ACLU and AU. 

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 11/23/10

Newt Gingrich

Government: Claims that Attorney General Eric Holder “endangered national security” and should resign (NewsMax, 11/21).

Media: Says he will refuse to attend a debate hosted by “hostile” and “left-wing” Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann (Mediaite, 11/21).

Mike Huckabee

2012: Warns that GOP takeover of the House will help Obama in 2012 (The Note, 11/22).

Religious Right: Iowa Independent looks at Huckabee’s ties to Vander Plaats, IFPC (Iowa Independent, 11/22).

Iowa: Congratulates voters for ousting judges who backed same-sex marriage rights (AP, 11/21).

Sarah Palin

Obama: In new book says that the President betrays “a stark lack of faith in the American people” (USA Today, 11/23).

Media: Tells Sean Hannity she will only speak to non-biased reporters and shun Katie Couric (CBS News, 11/22).

2012: Conservatives4Palin lists the five top reasons she is qualified to be President, includes PTA volunteering and “Pro-Life Advocacy” (C4P, 11/19).

Tim Pawlenty

Government: Calls on Attorney General Eric Holder to resign (Iowa Independent, 11/22).

Health Care: Writes Op-Ed on how states can stop health care reform (San Diego Union Tribune, 11/18).

Mitt Romney

Poll: New poll has Romney as most competitive Republican, in statistical dead heat with Obama (Quinnipiac, 11/22).

Fundraising: NYT explores Romney’s web of state leadership PACS (NYT, 11/20).

Rick Santorum

2012: Set to address Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) meeting in February (Sunshine State News, 11/22).

New Hampshire: Plans on seventh appearance in the Granite State later this month (CNN, 11/17).

Tea Party: After claiming to be only Tea Party presidential hopeful, says that Angle, Miller, and O’Donnell don’t represent movement either (GOP 12, 11/16).

Fischer: Children Should Be Ready For Marriage and Work At Age 16

I have spent the last year or so listening to Bryan Fischer's daily radio program and reading his regular blog posts on the American Family Association website and have to admit that sometimes I wonder if he isn't really a left-wing performance artist masquerading as an ultra-conservative right-wing zealot in order to make the movement look foolish or else is just someone who concocts ever more ridiculous pieces in an effort to generate attention for himself.

Because, honestly, how else do you explain things like this in which he says that both "the Jews" and Iranian president Mahmoud Admadinejad are right: we need to start demanding that our children be ready for marriage and work by the time they turn 16 ... oh, and that criminals as young as twelve should be expected to get the death penalty:

This has implications for juvenile law enforcement, by the way. Any individual over the age of 12 should be held personally responsible for violations of the law. We shouldn’t punish his parents, and we shouldn’t impose softer penalties just because of his age. Young adults are adults, and should be expected to behave as adults and accept the punishment we dish out to adults who break the law.

There are implications in this for our system of education. We should roll back secondary education to the point where our students are graduating from high school by age 16. We can teach them everything they need to learn at the secondary level by then, and prepare them for the next stage in life, which could be further education, apprenticeship, or vocational education. We should expect them to be launching into some kind of career trajectory by the time they are 16.

...

There are implications in all of this for the institution of marriage. By idolizing adolescence, we have artificially prolonged the age at which people enter in marriage. The average is now, according to 2007 figures, about 27.5 years for men and 25.6 for women.

But the young men and women whom God has created become sexually mature by their mid-teens. The bodies that God has created are ready for sexual intimacy by the time they are 16. Unless God has made a mistake in the way he has designed our sexuality, then we need to rethink our whole understanding of the optimum age for entering into marriage.

We know that sex is good, and that it is designed by God for marriage. It is his design that all of our sexual energy be channeled into the marriage relationship. Now if God has designed our bodies so that they are prepared for sexual union by age 16, then perhaps he is telling us that we should be emotionally, mentally, and spiritually prepared to enter into marriage at about the same time or shortly thereafter.

CPAC Board To Decide GOProud's Fate

As we noted yesterday, the American Principles Project and several other Religious Right goups have been threatening to boycott next year's CPAC conference if the gay conservative group GOProud to participate again this year.

Now WorldNetDaily is reporting that the pressure is getting to organizers at the American Conservative Union, which has decided to put to issue to a vote before CPAC's board of directors, and that more groups are planning on boycotting the event if GOProud is not given the boot:

The Conservative Political Action Conference board of directors is voting whether to permit a homosexual activist group, GOProud, to participate in CPAC again this year.

CPAC's organizer, the American Conservative Union, is under pressure after the American Principles Project issued an open letter announcing its withdrawal from the conference over GOProud's participation.

"If someone is tempted to think for a moment that GOProud is a benign force, then they should examine GOProud's insistence that the Republican party abandon social issues entirely. This makes them the friend of the Democratic party, which long ago embraced every radical sexual expression under the sun," said Robert Knight, senior correspondent for Coral Ridge Ministries.

With several more social conservative groups dropping out or threatening to do so behind the scenes, ACU chairman David Keene called on CPAC's board of directors to decide whether GOProud should be welcomed at the conference for a second straight year, according to a source on the board.

The results of the vote will be announced on Monday.

"We've decided to put our resources elsewhere," said Mat Staver, president of Liberty Counsel. "We're going to attend the Values Voters Summit and Awakening 2011."

Staver explained that the latter conferences would both respect all three legs of the conservative "stool" described by President Ronald Reagan: fiscal responsibility, strong national defense and social conservatism.

Religious Right Putting Pressure on CPAC to Drop GOProud

The other day we noted that the American Principles Project had informed the American Conservative Union that they would not be participating in next year's CPAC because of the decision to allow GOProud to serve as a sponsor.

Today, APP's Malia Blom went on CBN News to explain that they would not participate so long as CPAC was going to include groups like GOProud to who "actively work against a fundamental principle of conservatism: faith, family, traditional marriage": 

And the APP is not alone in pressuring CPAC to drop GOProud, as both the American Family Association and the Family Research Council weighing in as well

The American Family Association is also deciding whether to stay away from CPAC again this year over GOProud.

"We didn't send our radio talk show hosts up there last year because of GOProud," said AFA president Tim Wildmon. "We will have to look at their level of participation this year. In the next couple of weeks we'll decide."

The Family Research Council is working with ACU directly about the GOProud issue.

"We have communicated privately with the board with the desire to see this resolved in a way that benefits America's families," Family Research Council vice president for communications JP Duffy told WND.

American Principles Projects Withdraws From CPAC Due To GOProud

As we noted earlier today, GOProud's effort to get the GOP and the conservative movement in general to ignore the social issues at the core of the Religious Right's agenda is not going over very well.

And now comes the news that the American Principles Project, founded by the National Organization for Marriage's Robert George, has told the American Conservative Union that they will not participate in next year's CPAC because of GOProud's sponsorship:

I write to inform you that the American Principles Project has decided not to participate in the 2011 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) due to the planned participation of the organization known as GOProud.

...

Last year, of course, the American Principles Project participated in CPAC despite the presence of GOProud. That was a mistake, just as it was, in our opinion, a mistake for CPAC to countenance GOProud’s participation. Having now examined closely GOProud’s mission and its behavior since its inception, we can only conclude that the organization’s purposes are fundamentally incompatible with a movement that has long embraced the ideals of family and faith in a thriving civil society. Needless to say, we are deeply persuaded that a thriving civil society is an indispensable bulwark against the relentless expansion of government, a phenomenon that has gripped much of the Western world and helped to fuel the present fiscal and economic crisis.

...

It is also clear that GOProud’s reason-to-be is built around a form of identity politics that conservative thought formally rejects because of its understanding of human nature. Each item on its broadly stated agenda can be pursued, and is being pursued, by groups that do not focus on such identity politics. Rather than join as individuals and be welcomed and respected into these groups, GOProud pursues policy outcomes that are rooted not in the broad conservative principles it claims to support but in the identity – in this case, sexual and behavioral identity – politics it advocates. This politics inevitably leads to outcomes that confront the conservative core, as Christopher Barron, chairman of GOProud, seemed to acknowledge in a statement to The Advocate in July 2010 that underscored his personal support for same-sex marriage and a long-term strategy to impose it.

But GOProud has done more than simply omit a core tenet of conservatism from its agenda. It has demonstrated that its agenda includes assaults on the very conservative leadership that has brought our movement a fresh opportunity to steer our nation once again onto the right course. At a time when the rest of the conservative movement has been focused on how to convert the overwhelming election victory of November 2 into a policy advance that strengthens both the economic and social underpinnings of our republic, GOProud has chosen this very hour to attempt to attack Sen. Jim DeMint and even question his place, and the place of those of us who share his socially conservative views, in the conservative movement ... What is at stake in your decision regarding the partnership of GOProud in next year's CPAC is precisely this: will CPAC embrace a deadening egalitarianism at the expense of marriage and the family as long-established social institutions? This is not a decision merely for one event but  a fundamental question for the integrity of the conservative cause.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 11/16/10

Newt Gingrich

Obama: Calls President’s policies “very dangerous” but believes “he loves this country” (CBN News, 11/15).

GOP: Says Republicans can “replace the left” with a ten-year plan (CBS News, 11/12).

Mike Huckabee

Congress: Like Romney, launches petition to support earmark ban (HuckPac, 11/15).

Defense: Open to cutting defense spending to reduce the deficit (Think Progress, 11/15).

Religious Right: Confusion over form of Huckabee’s speech to Iowa Family Policy Center (RWW, 11/11).

Sarah Palin

Reality TV: Premier of new show draws close to 5 million viewers (WSJ, 11/15).

Alaska: Lisa Murkowski criticizes Palin’s leadership capabilities (CBS News, 11/15).

Language: “Refudiate” declared the year’s best new word by the New Oxford American Dictionary (LA Times, 11/15).

Economy: Reuters analyst explores Palin’s “free-market populism” (Reuters, 11/12).

Book tour: Releases schedule for latest book tour with focus on “the heartland” (LA Times, 11/12).

Tim Pawlenty

Health Care: Files amicus brief to support lawsuit calling health care reform unconstitutional (Gov Monitor, 11/15).

Electability: Nate Silver dubs Pawlenty a “league-average politician” (NYT, 11/15).

New Hampshire: Writes anti-spending Op-Ed for state’s foremost conservative newspaper (Union Leader, 11/14).

Mitt Romney

Congress: Like Huckabee, launches petition to support earmark ban (The Hill, 11/15).

Fundraising: Has edge among early fundraisers (NYT, 11/12).

Tea Party: Tea Party Express leader says conservatives “not going to let go of the health care” law in Massachusetts (ABC News, 11/11).

Rick Santorum

2012: Building infrastructure in key states for 2012 run (Sunshine State News, 11/12).

Tea Party: Dubs himself the only authentic Tea Party presidential prospect (Politico, 11/10).

Bachmann "Likely" to Attend Conference Advocating War With Iran?

I think it is safe to say that nothing good can come from a conference in which a bunch of right-wingers and Muslim-haters gather to promote methods to "liberate the Iranian people and the world from the on-going and brutal repression" of the government in Iran: 

On November 17, 2010, Freedom Watch and the Foundation for Democracy in Iran will host a symposium at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. to discuss and formulate policy on how the United States and the West can liberate the Iranian people and the world from the on-going and brutal repression of the Persian freedom movement now underway in the Islamic Republic and eliminate the threat of atomic weapons and a potential nuclear holocaust.

This conference is timely and important, as the policy of "appeasement" that has been attempted by the Obama administration and the European Union has proven to be a dismal failure. It is hoped that this conference will help convince the new Congress, with the House of Representatives now in Republican hands, independent Democrats, and other entities, to push harder for U.S. and western intervention to remove this dangerous radical Islamic regime before it is too late.

This conference will showcase distinguished leaders whom are experts on Iranian issues. Among the speakers are former CIA Director James Woolsey, former CIA double "agent" Reza Kahlili, whose recent book, "A Time to Betray" details his time as an American spy inside the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, former U.N. Ambassador Alan Keyes, former Reagan administration national security advisor, Frank Gaffney, investigative journalist and Iran specialist Ken Timmerman, human rights activist and former Miss Canada Miss World runner-up, Nazanin Afshin-Jam, founder of Judicial Watch and Freedom Watch, Larry Klayman and U.S. Senators and Congressmen.

They will all offer insight as to how the U.S. and the West must now take action to remove the Islamic regime, thereby bringing about freedom for the Persian people and eliminating the prospect of a nuclear holocaust by radicals bent on the destruction of and dominance over western civilization and Israel.

Among the politicians listed as "invited speakers" are Dana Rohrabacher, Trent Franks John McCain, Lindsey Graham, Rudy Giuliani, Sarah Palin, Marco Rubio, and Alan West ... as well as Michele Bachmann, who is the only one listed as "likely" to attend.

Meet Tim Griffin: Karl Rove’s Man in Congress

Following last Tuesday's election, RWW will bring you our list of the "The Ten Scariest Republicans Heading to Congress." Our fifth candidate profile is on Tim Griffin of Arkansas:

Running in an open Democratic district, Tim Griffin defeated progressive champion Joyce Elliott to win the election to represent Arkansas’s 2nd Congressional District.

Tim Griffin worked in the two Bush presidential campaigns and McCain’s 2008 campaign as the Republicans’ chief opposition researcher. In 2000, he said with regards to his opposition research department: “We think of ourselves as the creators of the ammunition in a war…. We make the bullets.” Conservative columnist Robert Novak called Griffin “a protégé of Karl Rove, who is a leading practitioner of opposition research — the digging up of derogatory information about political opponents.”

He received notoriety in 2004 for his work to advance the false smears propagated by the discredited group Swift Boat Veterans for Truth.

Griffin next came to light when President Bush appointed him U.S. Attorney as part of his ongoing efforts to politicize the Department of Justice. “In December 2006, US Attorney Bud Cummings was fired from his district in Northeast Arkansas and replaced with Tim Griffin,” writes investigative journalist Shannyn Moore, as the Bush Administration used a little known provision of the USA Patriot Act to avoid confirmation hearings and votes by the US Senate. Deputy Attorney General Paul McNaulty later testified that “Cummings was fired to make a place for Griffin at the urging of Karl Rove and Harriet Miers,” the former White House Counsel. Kyle Sampson, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’s Chief of Staff, wrote in an email that “getting him appointed was important to Harriet, Karl, etc.”

Paul Charlton, who was also ousted in the Bush Administration’s Purge of US Attorneys, said that Griffin “spread the rumors around the White House that Bud Cummins was not a good U.S. attorney” in order to get him fired. Another U.S. Attorney who was pushed out during the purge, David Iglesias, maintains that Tim Griffin “never should have been U.S. Attorney, he was fundamentally unqualified.”

When defending Griffin’s nomination, the Bush Administration used “misleading talking points” which significantly exaggerated his experience as a prosecutor.

Griffin continued his deeply political work while serving as a U.S. Attorney, but was forced to resign in 2007 when he was caught in a “vote caging” operation to prevent minorities from voting. The BBC uncovered emails sent by Griffin during the 2004 campaign which included ‘caging lists’ to bar typically marginalized groups voting, and Griffin’s “caging lists were heavily weighted with minority voters including homeless individuals, students and soldiers sent overseas.”

According to Iglesias, his management of the vote caging maneuvers represents “reprehensible conduct and it may be illegal.” As a result of his disreputable background, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) rated him one of the “most corrupt” candidates for Congress.

When he was not working in the Bush Administration or for GOP campaigns, Griffin was a high-paid consultant and earned hundreds of thousands of dollars while working for “lobbying and consulting firms on shadowy causes,” including the corporate astro-turf campaign that was fighting Alaska’s Clean Water Initiative.

Throughout his congressional campaign, Griffin has closely followed the Karl Rove-playbook of appealing to both corporate interests and the Religious Right. Griffin wants to repeal health care reform and once supported the elimination of corporate taxes in favor of a national sales tax. At a candidate forum, he even went out of his way to laud the state’s relatively low wages for workers and anti-union laws.

An opponent of equal rights and a woman’s right to choose, Griffin supports a Constitutional Amendment banning same-sex marriage, believes that employers should be allowed to fire their employees due to their sexual orientation, and has pledged to protect the discriminatory Defense Of Marriage Act (DOMA). The fervently anti-choice group Americans United for Life Action ran ads boosting Griffin and criticizing his opponent, saying that she does not care about “the life of an innocent child.”

After a long career of dirty tricks, corporate astro-turfing, and Rovian politics, Griffin is a darling of the Republican leadership and set to become a star member of the GOP’s freshman class.

Watch this segment from the Bill Moyers Journal on Tim Griffin:

 

 

 

Christ The King: No Compromise Over Christian Flag In North Carolina

For months now, controversy has been raging in the town of King, North Carolina ever since a local veteran objected to the fact that a Christian flag was being flown at a veteran's memorial in the city's Central Park.

City officials eventually received letters from both the American Civil Liberties Union of North Carolina and the Americans United for the Separation of Church and State and decided to remove the flag until they could work out a policy that was constitutional with the help of the Alliance Defense Fund.

And the decision to remove the flag in the interim set off protests

Many of the marchers’ T-shirts simply read, “Put our flag back.” Waving U.S. and Christian flags, and singing “Amazing Grace,” more than 5,000 people marched and rallied in the city of King yesterday morning to tell its city council to return the Christian flag to the Veteran’s Memorial in Central Park.

“The council didn’t get the opinions of the town of King and Stokes County,” said Pamela Swain Deszern, of Rural Hall, formerly of King. “This community stands together to support the Christian flag. It stands for God, peace, love, purity and the blood of Jesus.”

Working with the ADF, city officials finally came up with a policy last week that they felt was a fair and constitutional compromise: 

An attorney for the Alliance Defense Fund said that the city’s plan for returning the Christian flag to the Veteran’s Memorial is a fair compromise.

...

The King City Council approved a policy Monday night that eventually would allow a Christian flag to fly again at a memorial at the city’s Central Park as a part of a limited public display of religious flags recognized by the U.S. military.

Members of the Army Chaplain Corps wear four symbols on their uniforms — the Christian cross, the Jewish tablets and Star of David, the Buddhist dharma-chakra and the Muslim crescent, said Lt. Col. Christopher Garver, a spokesman for the U.S. Army.

There are also 41 religious symbols that can be placed on grave markers at Arlington National Cemetery.

The city’s new policy will lay out which flags and symbols would be displayed at the memorial.

But, of course, the idea of allowing any non-Christian flag to fly is simply unacceptable:

A group formed to return the Christian flag to the King Veteran’s Memorial may file a complaint against the city to protest a policy that would allow additional flags to be displayed at the site.

...

Many of the foundation’s members are concerned that the city may allow religious flags such as the Muslim Crescent and Star flag, the satanic flag and Wiccan flag, all of which are recognized by the U.S. military, to be flown at the memorial, James said.

“There is room for expansion for this memorial,” [said Stephen James of King, an organizer of King Veteran’s Memorial Preservation Foundation.] “No one has asked for another flag to be put up there. But someone asked for our flag to be taken down.”

Under the compromise proposal, flags would fly one at a time on a rotating basis ... and so, as Americans United reports, Christian activists are working on a plan to completely monopolize the process for years to come:

This plan was revealed on the Facebook page, Christian Flag-King. The page serves to “educate, inform and update the King community and supporters to restore and keep the Christian flag flying at the Veteran’s Memorial in Central Park.” It has more than 4,000 members.

On Nov. 4, Christian Flag-King reposted a comment from Pastor Kevin Broyhill, who explained how the city can keep its sectarian bias in place. He wrote:

“The city will set the stipulations of who can fly a flag in honor of their loved one who has served in the Armed Forces. That is where the word ‘limited’ comes in. It restricts who can participate which will eliminate outsiders from taking over the pole. The idea is for Christians to fill up the reservation list and tie up the pole for years to come. This will ensure that the Christian Flag keeps flying. Calvary [Baptist Church] will buy several Christian Flags for people to use so that everyone doesn’t have to buy their own flag. We’ll even put it up for you!”

Ken Blackwell & Mike Lee Team Up to Pass Balanced Budget Amendment

Ken Blackwell wears many hats:

Ken Blackwell is the Senior Fellow for Family Empowerment at the Family Research Council, and the Ronald Reagan Distinguished Fellow for Public Policy at the Buckeye Institute in Columbus, Ohio. He is a visiting fellow at the Texas Public Policy Foundation and the American Civil Rights Union. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Club for Growth, National Taxpayers Union and Pastors Retreat Network. Mr. Blackwell is also the Chairman for the Coalition for a Conservative Majority, and a member of the National Rifle Association’s Public Affairs Committee. He is a columnist for the New York Sun, a contributing editor and columnist for the conservative news and opinion site Townhall.com, and a public affairs commentator for the Salem Radio Network.

To this list we can now add Chairman of a new group named "Balanced Budget Amendment Now" which, as its name suggests, is going to be focused solely on passing a Balanced Budget Amendment and has already received the support of Senator-Elect Mike Lee (R-UT): 

A new organization has launched to campaign for a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution, Balanced Budget Amendment Now. Focused solely on passing a balanced budget amendment (BBA), the group seeks to enlist 5,000 – 10,000 voters in each congressional district who will urge their members of Congress to vote for a BBA. This organization will be chaired by the Honorable Kenneth Blackwell, a longtime taxpayer advocate and fiscal conservative.

"We're glad to see the historic change in Congress and in state houses across America. The people have spoken forcefully, and they reject the profligate spending and massive expansion of government that they see in Washington, DC. The new Congress will face tremendous pressure as they seek to cut spending, and Balanced Budget Amendment Now will be there to remind them that they weren't elected to trim spending or slow down the rate of growth, but to cut, de-authorize and balance the budget.

"To that end, we want to give the 112th Congress and future Congresses a valuable tool to keep spending in check, a BBA to the Constitution. Our first step towards this goal is a vote on the BBA by October 1, 2011, the first day of the next fiscal year. Only by the active participation of 'We the People' can we force Congress and the President to act, before it's too late to avoid an economic collapse," concluded Blackwell.

Balanced Budget Amendment Now has asked Senator-Elect Mike Lee (R-UT) to draft BBA language and to enlist the support of his colleagues. Senator-Elect Lee stated, "The time has come for Congress to do the right thing and pass a balanced budget amendment. The majority of states in this country balance their budgets every year. Requiring Congress to do the same simply requires self-restraint, fiscal discipline, forethought and a commitment to follow both the roles and restraints outlined in the Constitution."

Lee concluded, "I applaud the efforts of groups like Balanced Budget Amendment Now for moving this issue forward. This is the type of dialogue and discussion Congress and our citizens need to engage in at this critical time in our nation's history. A balanced budget amendment is an important first step to reclaiming our future."

Meet Congresswoman-Elect Sandy Adams: Conspiracy-Theorist, Religious Extremist

Following Tuesday's election, RWW will bring you our list of the "The Ten Scariest Republicans Heading to Congress."  Our first candidate is Florida's version of Sharron Angle, Sandra "Sandy" Adams:

After serving four terms in the Florida State House, Sandy Adams ran for US Congress and handily defeated freshman Congresswoman Suzanne Kosmas. She built-up a far-right voting record as a state representative, and she campaigned as the most conservative candidate in the competitive Republican primary.

As a legislator and candidate Sandy Adams has embraced the agenda of the Religious Right. Adams voted to enact burdensome waiting periods and tougher parental notice laws for young women seeking abortions, and voted in favor of forcing women to have ultrasound tests before terminating their pregnancy, which the Governor ultimately vetoed for placing “an inappropriate burden on women seeking to terminate a pregnancy.” During the GOP primary she was endorsed by militantly anti-choice groups such as the Republican National Coalition for Life and the American Conservative Union. Moreover, she is on-record opposing stem-cell research and boasts that she “fought against this type of research funding in the Florida House of Representatives.”

She is also an avowed opponent of teaching evolution, and voted in favor of a bill that calls on teachers to “teach theories that contradict the theory of evolution.” Adams herself does not believe evolution and says that Christians should reject evolution in favor of “the biblical terms of how we came about.” When asked “by a caller in a telephone town hall meeting whether she believed in evolution…Adams replied, ‘I’m Christian. What else do you want to know?’” Adams also supports Florida’s unsuccessful private school vouchers program and wants the Ten Commandments to be displayed in public schools.

Like Sharron Angle, Sandy Adams floats the baseless conspiracy theory that Islamic, or Sharia, law is thriving in Muslim communities in Michigan and in danger of spreading throughout Michigan and the United States:

The Muslim extremist project is to create pockets and to grow their Muslim extreme philosophies, and if you look at some of our towns within our own borders, like Michigan, Michigan has cities that have a lot of Muslim influence and even so much as I would say some extremist Muslim influence because they are trying to operate under Sharia law, not American law. And I believe that we need to continue to operate under our Constitutional laws and the laws of our country and our state and we should not be under any other form of the law.

Sarah Palin endorsed Sandy Adams, and Adams claims that she “can’t wait to join the Tea Party Caucus” and said that “I believe what Michele Bachmann is doing is the right thing to do and I will be part of that Caucus, I can assure you of that.”

She has embraced anti-government extremism, and wants to radically alter the Constitution by repealing the 16th and 17th Amendments, which would eliminate the progressive income tax and the right of voters to elect their US Senators, respectively. Adams believes that instead of voters, state legislators like herself should pick the state’s Senators. Adams also wants to abolish the Department of Education, said that the Departments of Energy and Interior Departments should be “completely dismantled” because they are “not allowed by our Constitution,” and strongly opposes Wall Street Reform. She wouldn’t “vouch for the constitutionality of the federal Clean Water and Clean Air acts without reading them,” writes the Orlando Sentinel, “yet she’s all for big government when it comes to NASA.,” which is based in her district.

Furthermore, she backs Republican Rep. Paul Ryan’s “Roadmap for America,” which calls for the privatization of Social Security and Medicare. According to Florida Today, Adams “wants to cut government spending, but couldn’t cite one area to cut; wants to repeal health care reform, but offered no alternative; and is willing to look at privatizing Medicare, something that should alarm seniors.” Adams was also the chief sponsor of a state constitutional amendment that would stop Florida from cooperating with the recently passed health care reform law by barring mandatory insurance coverage.

Adams is also ardently opposed to immigrant rights and touts the endorsement of Americans for Legal Immigration, which has been classified as a “nativist extremist organization” by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The group is “allied with various Minuteman factions” and according to the SPLC, the group says that its “‘rallying cry is: Illegals Go Home!’” While serving in the State House, Adams was one of just fourteen members to vote against allowing undocumented children to receive healthcare through Florida KidCare.

On the environment, Adams supports offshore oil drilling off Florida’s coast and tried to censure the Governor for attempting to pass a constitutional amendment to prohibit such drilling.

A steadfast and longtime advocate of the Religious Right and anti-government extremism, Sandy Adams plans to be a bridge between Christian conservatives and Tea Party reactionaries in addition to a stalwart ally of Michele Bachmann in the House.

 

 

 

 

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 11/02/10

With the midterm elections taking place today, tomorrow is the unofficial beginning of the race for the 2012 GOP nomination.

Haley Barbour

Tea Party: Claims that Tea Party candidates will find a home in the GOP (AP, 11/2)

GOP: Says that Party will have to earn trust since voters are “not saying ‘Hey, we love you Republicans,’” (CBS, 11/1).

Newt Gingrich

2012: Tells WaPo that a 2012 bid is becoming “increasingly” practical (WaPo, 10/29).

Florida: Holds “Jobs Here Jobs Now” rally in Florida (Florida Times-Union, 10/29).

Mike Huckabee

Alaska: Making robo-calls on behalf of Joe Miller (AP, 11/1).

Iowa: Making robo-calls against the retention of three Iowa judges (Daily Caller, 10/29).

Mitt Romney

Health Care: Defends MA health care program, says national reform law is “unconstitutional” (GOP 12, 11/2).

Maine: Stumps for congressional candidate Dean Scontras, who is challenging Rep. Chellie Pingree (News 13, 11/1).

Iowa: Campaigns with GOP gubernatorial nominee Terry Branstad (Des Moines Register, 10/27).

Sarah Palin

2010: Find out how Palin-endorsed candidates perform on election day (WaPo, 11/2).

GOP: Says that the “good old boys club” is working against her (Politico, 11/2).

Colorado: Making robo-calls on behalf of Tom Tancredo (ABC, 11/1).

Media:  Floats Breitbart-linked conspiracy theory (Media Matters, 11/1).

West Virginia: Stumps with John Raese and praises “Mountain mamas” (LAT, 10/30).

Tim Pawlenty

Minnesota: Low favorability numbers may hurt GOP chances of retaining the governorship (City Pages, 11/1).

Palin: Defends Palin over Twitter over claims that she is unelectable (TPM, 11/1).

Mike Pence

GOP: Calls on his Party to focus on deficit reduction if in power (National Journal, 11/2).

2012: May leave GOP leadership to seek presidency or governorship (Indy Star, 10/31).

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union Posts Archive

Brian Tashman, Monday 04/11/2011, 1:10pm
At the Freedom Federation’s The Awakening 2011, right-wing activists unleashed their venom at the gay community and supporters of gay rights at the “Religious Liberty and the LGBT Agenda” panel. Robert Knight, a columnist for the Washington Times who is the executive director of the far-right American Civil Rights Union, maintained that gay congressional staffers represent one of the most difficult hurdles for opponents of LGBT equality. According to Knight, who has also worked for a wide range of conservative groups like the Heritage Foundation, Family Research Council,... MORE
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 04/06/2011, 10:35am
As Kyle noted in March, Religious Right activist Scott Lively is keeping up his attacks on gays despite a lengthy Boston Globe profile on how Lively is “toning down his antigay rhetoric.” Writing for his organization Defend the Family International, Lively discusses how his review of historic religious and political documents has corroborated his fierce opposition to gay-rights, and goes on to argue that gay-rights is simply “the ‘right’ to spread sexual disease and dysfunction” and is the “antithesis of genuine human rights.” Reading these... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 04/04/2011, 5:42pm
Josh Harkinson @ Mother Jones: The Religious Right's Anti-Union Crusade. Matt Algren: LaBarbera's Truth Academy Fails Spectacularly. Again. Alvin McEwen: Family Research Council accidentally admits truth about hate group charges. Towleroad: Peter Sprigg Claims FRC Is Not A Hate Group. Joe.My.God: Mandatory Gay Adoption! Julie Sunday @ RH Reality Check: Texas to Consider "Traditional Values Centers" at State Universities. Terry Krepel @ County Fair: Pat Robertson Backs Ivory Coast Leader -- Whose Family “Guarantee[s]” Robertson’s... MORE
Brian Tashman, Thursday 03/31/2011, 1:59pm
Jerry Newcombe of Coral Ridge Ministries appeared on WallBuilders Live, the radio program of right-wing pseudo historian David Barton, to promote his new book about how the Constitution was supposedly shaped by the Bible. Speaking to Barton’s co-host Rick Green, Newcombe claimed that the goal of organizations such as People For the American Way, the American Civil Liberties Union, and the Freedom From Religion Foundation is to arrest and imprison people who pray in public. He points to D. James Kennedy, the founder of Coral Ridge Ministries, to argue that without prayer in schools,... MORE
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 03/29/2011, 12:38pm
As part of the Religious Right’s burgeoning anti-union campaign, The Family Research Council’s Super PAC is entering the fight in Wisconsin in the contested Supreme Court race. FRC president Tony Perkins showed his support for the state’s embattled governor Scott Walker, tweeting, “Pro-family voters should celebrate WI victory b/c public & private sector union bosses have marched lock-step w/liberal social agenda.” Walker’s chief ally on the state Supreme Court, David Prosser, is now facing a serious challenge in the judicial election on April 5th.... MORE
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 03/29/2011, 10:43am
Tea Party Nation is a major (for-profit) Tea Party organization that gained prominence after its convention last year hosted Republican leaders like Sarah Palin and Tom Tancredo, along with Religious Right figures Roy Moore and Rick Scarborough. TPN’s President Judson Phillips previously denounced the “Marxist” Methodist Church and suggested that President Obama’s campaign was funded by Hamas and China. This morning, Tea Party Nation sent out an email to its members with the headline “Destroy the Family, You Destroy the Country!” from an article by Dr. Rich... MORE
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 03/29/2011, 10:00am
Michele Bachmann Fundraising: Embellishes fundraising skills (WaPo, 3/28). Religious Right: Slams proposed “social issues truce” at conservative forum (Des Moines Register, 3/26). Iowa: Names State Senator and prominent Birther the director of her Iowa campaign (MoJo, 3/25). Haley Barbour Mississippi: State lawmakers criticize Barbour’s out of state traveling that caused him to miss budget deadline (The State Column, 3/28). Obama: Claims President sees Americans as “too stupid to take care of ourselves” (ABC News, 3/26). Equality: Calls to reinstate Don... MORE