Thursday, March 07, 2013

GOP House Rebuffs Conservatives' Religious Liberty

Yesterday the U.S. House leadership rushed passage of the "continuing resolution" (CR) legislation to fund the budgetless federal government for the rest of the fiscal year INCLUDING funding for ObamaCare to force Christians to fund abortifacients, sterilization, contraceptives, etc.  Fourteen Republicans voted against the bill.

Congressional proponents for religious liberty see the CR process as the best opportunity to force a religious conscience exemption into ObamaCare, because failure to pass the CR results in a full government shutdown before April.
“We want a resolution on this government assault on our first freedom. The House leadership should reconsider its decision not to place this language on the Continuing Resolution.”
-- Tony Perkins, Family Research Council
For background, click headlines below for previous articles:

Bishops Say Catholic Church Will Defy ObamaCare

Christians Oppose ObamaCare, Support Hobby Lobby

Supreme Court Allows Christians to Sue ObamaCare

Bishops Slam Obama: Criminal in Eyes of God

Bishops Warn Voting for Democrats is 'Grave Sin'

The question for Christians to discern: Are Republicans abandoning a God-fearing Party platform?

-- From "House approves bill to fund government through September" by Reuters 3/6/13

The House bill was passed by 267 votes to 151. It gives President Barack Obama's administration flexibility in how it will achieve savings in defense and veterans' programs that are required as part of the $85 billion [sequester] automatic spending cuts that began on Friday.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Right jabs GOP inaction on Obamacare" by Ginger Gibson, Politico 3/7/13

So far, the CR, the legislation that will keep the government funded through March 27, is progressing with minimal drama, with both sides trying to avoid a shutdown. Democrats have mostly abandoned efforts to completely undo the sequester through the bill. Republicans have left out the kind of language that would delight the base but meet a quick end in the Senate.

But some conservative leaders are fuming that Republicans, particularly in the House where the GOP controls the chamber, didn’t at least trying to attach language to eliminate Obamacare through the legislation.

. . . Tony Perkins, head of the conservative Family Research Council, said Democrats were successful while in the minority with attaching party priorities to “must-pass” legislation but Republicans haven’t followed that model.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "GOP House Approves CR That Funds All Obamacare--Including Regulation Attacking Religious Freedom" by Terence P. Jeffrey, 3/6/13

On Tuesday, the Republican-controlled Rules Committee rejected a request by Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R.-Okla.) to allow the full House to simply vote on an amendment to the CR sponsored by Bridenstine, Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R.-Kans.) and Rep. Ron DeSantis (R.-Fla.) that would have stripped funding from implementation of Obamacare.

. . . 14 Republican House members, led by Rep. Diane Black (R.-Tenn.) and Rep. John Fleming (R.-La.), wrote Boehner and Cantor last week asking them to include language in the CR that would reverse the sterilization-contraception-abortifacient regulation in order to protect the free exercise of religion, which is guaranteed by the First Amendment.

. . . Bridenstine then asked the Rules Committee on Wednesday--when it approved the rule that would govern House floor proceeding on the CR--to allow a vote on his amendment. The Rules Committee, however, rejected Bridenstine's request and refused to allow the rank and file members of the House to even vote on the proposition of defunding Obamacare.

The Republican leaders did not include language in their CR to reverse this regulation--even though Boehner himself had declared in a House floor speech on Feb. 8, 2012 that the regulation was a violation of the constitutional right to freedom of religion and that Congress would not let it stand.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "GOP Leaders Urged to Include Religious Freedom Protection in Gov't Funding Bill" by Napp Nazworth, Christian Post Reporter 3/6/13

Radio talk show host Janet Parshall also spoke at the press conference. She expressed concern that the government is moving from protecting religious freedom to only protecting freedom of worship.

"When it becomes freedom of worship, rather than a freedom of religion, what the government is telling us in so many terms is you can believe what you want to believe as long as it's in the four walls of your church or your home, but, sorry, you can't take it out to the public square," Parshall said.

Dr. Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission and executive editor for The Christian Post, echoed Parshall's concerns.

"Freedom of religion," Land said, "leaves citizens of faith free to bring their religious convictions to bear in every arena of life, and to use those convictions to critique injustice ... The church is now faced with a stark choice in America. Is it going to be the confessing church, or is it going to be the lapdog church?"

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "FRC’s Perkins to House GOP Leaders: Ban 'This Government Assault on Our First Freedom'" by Patrick Burke, 3/6/13

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) have refused to allow the language barring funding for the HHS mandate from being included in any Continuing Resolution, opting instead to allow a stand-alone bill to proceed to a vote.

“We are grateful for the members of Congress like (Reps.) Diane Black (R-Tenn.), John Fleming (R-La.) and Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.), who are keeping this issue at the forefront by introducing this piece of stand-alone legislation,” Perkins said.

“But the reality is,” he added, “a stand-alone bill will never pass the United States Senate and be signed by the president dealing with this important issue. It has to be on a must-pass piece of legislation like the CR.”

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "House GOP Proposes Healthcare Conscience Act" by John Jessup, CBN News Washington Correspondent 3/7/13

The measure, introduced by Reps. Diane Black, R-Tenn., Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., and John Fleming, R-La., is designed to protect the rights of pro-life employers, insurers and medical workers.

The idea is to give them the right to go to court if they're forced to take part in procedures that violate their religious or moral beliefs.

The move is solely a GOP effort spear-headed by a handful of House Republicans.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Cruz amendment would defund Obamacare" by Ginger Gibson, Politico 3/6/13

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) will offer an amendment to the continuing resolution – the bill to keep the government open after March 27 — that would defund the Affordable Care Act.

“The very first priority of every elected official—Democrat and Republican—should be restoring economic growth, so we can ensure continued strength, prosperity, and opportunity for the next generations,” Cruz said in a statement. “Obamacare does precisely the opposite. It is already hurting small businesses, reducing the hours Americans are allowed to work, forcing employers to drop coverage, and leading to substantial increases in healthcare premiums—especially for young people.”

Cruz’s effort is unlikely to make any progress in the Democrat-controlled Senate. But he’s still going to try.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

Also read President Obama Redefines 1st Amendment Freedom of Religion even though Obama Denies Leading War Against Christianity

It comes down to Religious Liberty vs. Anti-Christian Totalitarianism in America