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Entire Hitching Post Controversy Is False: ACLU Finds Chapel Falls Under Religious Exemption

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The ACLU, which fights civil rights violations across the nation, says Idaho’s Hitching Post chapel is exempt from a non-discrimination ordinance.

By now, the entire nation likely know of a little wedding chapel in the tiny town of Coeur d’Alene. Thanks to the nation’s top anti-gay law firm, The Hitching Post has become the iconic victim of “homosexual bullies” who want to destroy traditional marriage and the First Amendment – if you listen to the homophobic, ignorant, Fox News watching masses, Mike Huckabee, and the American Family Association.

LOOK: Mike Huckabee’s False, Fear-Mongering Facebook Rant About ‘Hitching Post’ Gay Marriage Story

The Alliance Defending Freedom, the anti-gay law firm that has defended laws mandating life in prison for gay people, has spun a tall tale so ridiculous that the religious right bought it immediately.

But, as The New Civil Rights Movement reported earlier this week, the “facts” spewed by many, are lies.

LOOK: Almost Everything You’ve Been Told About The Idaho Wedding Chapel Story Is A Lie

And now, even the ACLU states the wedding chapel’s ministers, who have been marrying couples for decades and cite their faith for their refusal to marry same-sex couples, won’t have to. 

That’s what the entire argument that has captivated much of America, even managers at Walmart, has been about.

The Alliance Defending Freedom, as far as we can tell, are falsely claiming that at least one and maybe two same-sex couples have tried to get Donald and Evelyn Knapp, the owners of The Hitching Post, to marry them.

But there’s zero proof of that, and the City of Coeur d’Alene states no one has filed a complaint. The City of Coeur d’Alene also states the Knapp’s business falls under the religious exemption clause of the non-discrimination ordinance, and wonder why the Knapps never asked.

Fortunately, the ACLU (that’s their logo at the top) has made clear this manufactured anti-gay attack by the ADF is totally false.

“The American Civil Liberties Union of Idaho says it will not challenge a northern Idaho wedding chapel’s refusal to conduct gay marriages because the chapel falls under a religious exemption,” the AP reports. “Interim Executive Director Leo Morales said in a news conference Thursday that the Hitching Post became a religious corporation in Idaho nearly a month ago. Morales says the ACLU believes that under that exemption, the chapel does not have to comply with the city of Coeur d’Alene’s ordinance banning discrimination based on sexual orientation because the chapel only provides religious services.”

Will the Alliance Defending Freedom withdraw its suit and apologize to the City of Coeur d’Alene, which has been flooded with 33,000 emails attacking them?

The Southern Poverty Law Center reports that despite the facts, the anti-gay hate group American Family Association is milking this for all it’s worth — and it’s worth a lot.

The American Family Association – one of the biggest anti-LGBT organizations in the country with an estimated $20 million annual budget – says “homosexual bullies” are threatening to pressure the city of Coeur d’Alene to fine or arrest Donald and Evelyn Knapp, who operate the private wedding chapel.

The city of C’oeur d’Alene has asked the Knapps to withdraw the lawsuit, since they filed for religious exemption two weeks ago and would thus not be required to perform same-sex marriage ceremonies.

All those developments haven’t stopped American Family from making the Hitching Post case its cause célèbre, with a new “action alert” posting on its web page. “Once again, homosexual bullies have targeted Christian-owned businesses in their attempt to silence all opposition to their sinful lifestyle,’ the AFA message says.

That has resulted in a deluge of 33,000 e-mails and an estimated 300 phone calls to the office of Coeur d’Alene Mayor Steve Widmyer, city spokesman Keith Erickson told Hatewatch today. The e-mail messages “all read the same,” and are cut-and-paste scripted from the AFA web site, Erickson said.

One of American Family’s senior officials, Bryan Fischer, is the former director of the Idaho Values Alliance, a former AFA state affiliate. He has said homosexuality gave the world Adolf Hitler and was responsible for the extermination of six million Jews. Fischer also has called for criminalizing gay sex which, he claims, would end “gay indoctrination” public schools. He has also advocated forcing gay people into therapy to “cure’’ homosexuality which he likens to intravenous drug use.

 

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Watch: Bill Barr Has Talked to Jan. 6 Committee Says Chairman

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Bill Barr, the former Attorney General who served as then-President Donald Trump’s top protector, has spoken with the House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack.

Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS), asked by CBS News about a bombshell draft executive order directing the Secretary of Defense to seize voting machines after Trump lost the 2020 presidential election, said: “We’ve had conversations with the former attorney general already. We have talked to Department of Defense individuals.”

“We are concerned that our military was part of this big lie on promoting that the election was false,” Thompson said Sunday morning on “Face the Nation.”

“So, if you are using the military to potentially seize voting machines, even though it’s a discussion, the public needs to know. We’ve never had that before.”

The draft memo was never formalized or enacted, and it is unknown who wrote it, but it was part of a massive, hard-fought document collection given to the Jan. 6 Committee by the National Archives after the Supreme Court refused to block its release. Trump tried for months to keep his official White House records from being released.

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Trump Instructed Michael Cohen to Make Sure Don Jr. Went to Jail Instead of Ivanka

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According to a report from Business Insider, Michael Cohen admitted on Saturday that Donald Trump instructed him in 2012 to make sure that Don Trump Jr. be the one to take the fall instead of Ivanka Trump during an investigation by Manhattan’s district attorney into lying about property sales.

In an interview with MSNBC’s Alex Witt, Cohen recalled that the former president was concerned about Ivanka’s well-being if she was sentenced to jail and that Don Jr. would handle it better.

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RELATED: ’She took that West Wing office!’: Ivanka Trump blasted for trying to ‘blow off’ Jan. 6 probe

“And Donald said it to me – I mean I wouldn’t say it if it wasn’t said directly to me – he goes ‘if one or the other has to go to prison, make sure that it’s Don because Don would be able to handle it, ” he continued.

Cohen later said that he doesn’t expect Ivanka to willingly appear before the House committee investigating the Jan 6th insurrection and claimed the first daughter would likely plead the 5th before explaining, “Ivanka is only interested in Ivanka.”

You can read more here.

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Trumps Could ‘Turn on One Another’ as Investigations ‘Go Up the Food Chain’: MSNBC Analyst

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Former president Donald Trump and his family are facing “existential” threats from ongoing criminal investigations in New York and Georgia, according to MSNBC political analyst and Trump biographer Tim O’Brien.

“I think you’re going to start to see this vice squeeze in,” O’Brien said Saturday. “The Trumps will happily throw underlings under the bus as this gets hotter. I think the question is whether or not the family members will turn on one another as it goes up the food chain.”

“The Manhattan DA’s case has existential consequences to it,” O’Brien added. “Donald Trump and perhaps his children could end up in orange jumpsuits if that case goes the full route. That’s not going to be the case with (New York AG) Letitia James’ prosecution, that’s a civil case. I also think the Georgia case has an existential threat. Donald Trump acting like a 19th-century ward heeler, called up the secretary of state and said find me some votes, and there’s proof of that, there’s evidence.”

Watch the full interview below.

 

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