Editor’s note, June 8: Our latest story, “Republican National Committee Hires Tea Party Southern Baptist To Lobby For Evangelical Vote,” has a strong tie to the story you’re about to read below.
Republican U.S. Senator Rand Paul has political and financial ties to a certified anti-gay hate group and to a Christian Evangelical political “kingmaker” and his politically-focused religious organization. Senator Paul’s trip to Israel earlier this year was funded by the American Family Association and organized by the American Renewal Project‘s David Lane, who receives much of his and his group’s funding from the AFA. Lane made headlines this week for an anti-gay op-ed he wrote for World Net Daily, calling for a “war to restore a Christian America.”
Reporting on Senator Paul’s trip to Israel earlier this year, Business Insider noted it was “organized by evangelical kingmaker David Lane.”
And the Washington Times offered this admission from Lane:
“This trip to meet with Israelis, Arabs and Palestinians is absolutely the first step in his 2016 White House campaign,” said David Lane, evangelical political organizer and president of the Los Angeles-based Pastors and Pews.
Also writing of the trip, the progressive Jewish website Mondoweiss suggested that Senator Paul “is a participant in a mission trip funded by an evangelical media organization dubbed a ‘hate group’ by the Southern Law Poverty Center for anti-gay bigotry.”
Paul’s trip was financed by the American Family Association, a right-wing lobby group and a Christian media enterprise whose airways froth about the “homosexual lobby” and the likelihood that anti-discrimination legislation will lead to gay men in “stilettos, a dress and dangly earrings” bombarding Christian bookstores for sales jobs. Their anti-gay rhetoric even caught the ire of mainstream media. Last year, CNN’s Carol Costello cut an interview short with AFA spokesperson and radio jockey Bryan Fischer who claimed that Hitler surrounded himself with gay “storm troopers to be his enforcers” because according to Fischer straight storm troopers found moral objection to Nazism.
The New Civil Rights Movement reported on the above this year:
The ties don’t just stop there. The National Review, home to Maggie Gallagher, neocons, racists past and present, and the elite radical right, reveals the David Lane’s “daughter works as a press assistant to [Senator] Paul.
As it turns out, David Lane, Senator Paul, and other radical Republicans will be spending even more time together this year.
Senator Ted Cruz “and fellow Republican tea party darling Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky are the marquee names at the July 18-19 Iowa Renewal Project event in Des Moines,” the Dallas Morning News reported just yesterday. “Several hundred Iowa ministers are expected to attend.”
“The goal is the mobilization of pastors and pews to restore America to our Judeo-Christian heritage and re-establish a Christian culture,” said organizer David Lane.
“We’ve been in 15 states now, largely under the radar, and we’ve had 10,000 pastors plus spouses that we’ve put up overnight and fed three meals. The purpose is to get the pastors — the shepherds in America — to engage the culture through better registration and get out the vote,” he said.
According to the award-winning CBN Christian journalist David Brody, Lane’s “evangelical-based American Renewal Project will be organizing pastor policy briefings and voter registration drives across this country in 12 key states during the 2014 election cycle. It’s their latest attempt to restore America to its Judeo-Christian heritage.”
“If the key to maintaining sustainable freedom is righteousness — the same virtue that produced freedom — what is the greatest threat to freedom? Unrighteousness. America has left God,” Lane told Brody.
It should be noted that Lane and his American Renewal Project “played a significant role in removing Iowa’s three Supreme Court judges who ruled to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act,” CBN’s David Brody writes. “They have also been very vigorous in presidential politics; with top Republican candidates speaking at their pastor policy briefings in key swing states like Iowa and South Carolina.”
The American Renewal Project is “part of the American Family Association, the group that traveled around Iowa in the ‘Judge Bus’ and mobilized voters in 2010 to oust three of the Iowa Supreme Court justices who authored the unanimous ruling that legalized same-sex marriage here,” the Des Moines Register reported earlier this year. “The American Family Action Association and Iowa Christian Alliance spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in Iowa.”
But David Lane’s work is far more than travel agent, tour guide, or even political kingmaker. It includes writing hate filled op-eds in trashy, radical, right wing tabloids.
Lane this week wrote an op-ed in World Net Daily (WND) titled “Wage war to restore a Christian America.” WND is the same website that publishes regular, even weekly columns from former and likely future GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum and SPLC-certified hate group head Bradlee Dean.
Lane’s WND op-ed is so steeped in anti-gay hate parading about as religion that it’s shocking any serious national political candidate — and certainly not the libertarian Rand Paul — would want to be associated with him, especially given the national attention LGBT civil rights have recently received, and the separation of church and state libertarians generally support. Even those opposed to LGBT civil rights shy away from vitriol calling for a Christian war against gay people.
“Where are the champions of Christ to save the nation from the pagan onslaught imposing homosexual marriage, homosexual scouts, 60 million babies done to death by abortion and red ink as far as the eye can see on America?,” Lane, who worked to get Prop 8 on the ballot — ending marriage equality in California in 2008, wrote at WND:
“Let’s make it crystal clear: Those who embrace homosexual marriage and homosexual Scouting – or homosexuality in general – know little and practice nothing of Christianity.”
Complaining that “Evangelicals don’t get it,” and warning that “America’s survival is at stake,” Lane continues:
Christians must be retrained to war for the Soul of America and quit believing the fabricated whopper of the “Separation of Church and State,” the lie repeated ad nauseum by the left and liberals to keep Christian America – the moral majority – from imposing moral government on pagan public schools, pagan higher learning and pagan media. Bill Bennett’s insight, “… the two essential questions Plato posed as: Who teaches the children, and what do we teach them?” requires deep thought, soul-searching and a response from Christian America to the secular, politically correct and multicultural false gods imposing their religion on America’s children.
You ask, “What is our goal?” To wage war to restore America to our Judeo-Christian heritage with all of our might and strength that God will give us. You ask, “What is our aim?” One word only: victory, in spite of all intimidation and terror, victory, however long and hard the road may be; for without victory, America will ultimately collapse.
Despite his “under the radar” strategy, Lane is a well-connected cog in the radical religious right’s “America is a Christian nation” theocracy machine. If Rand Paul sees Lane as paving a 2016 road to the White House, he’ll likely find an America unwilling to support him.
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