Like ambulance chasing-attorneys, Liberty Counsel is in the business of lurking and looking for the next high-profile conservative Christian offering a potentially money-raising “persecution” story. Kim Davis certainly fit the bill.
ThriceÂ divorced county clerkÂ Kim Davis instructedÂ her office staff to refuse the issuance of marriage licenses toÂ anyoneÂ in Rowan County once the Supreme Court ruled same-sex couples have a civil right to marry â€” despite having takenÂ anÂ oath swearing to do her job “without favor, affection or partiality, so help me God.”Â And soon, Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver (photo, center, at microphone) became Davis’ attorney. Staver appears to have advised his client to break the law and continue to not issue federally mandated licenses to same-sex couples.
Constantly jockeying for position and prominence with the similarly missionedÂ Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), Liberty Counsel is technically a non-profit organization providing pro bono legal representation forÂ â€œreligious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family.â€ Liberty and ADFÂ seek out opportunities to represent conservative Christians in potentially high-profile religious liberties cases. This accomplishes two necessary tasks:Â keeping their organizations in the news, and for Liberty Counsel, it ensures yearly donations and grants exceeding $4 million will continue to flow in.
Both organizations are guilty of promotingÂ markedlyÂ flawed accounts of “persecuted” Christians who are most often simply people who discriminate and break the law using their beliefs to validate the wrongdoing.Â The entire charade garners the attention, sympathy, and financial support of conservative segments of the population who rarely dig into the details and seem so easily manipulated by a narrative in alignment with their fears.
Staver’s counsel to Davis hasÂ simply been bad advice; there was no way herÂ religious beliefs about the exclusivity of marriage as between a man and a woman would absolve her of the duties of her elected office. But, even bad advice successfully keeps religious liberties in news and subsequently, the cash coming in.
Under Staver’s counsel, Davis refused to obey a U.S. District Court injunction to resume her legal duties. Liberty Counsel then issued a statement:Â â€œKim Davis did not sign up as a clerk to issue same-sex marriage licenses.Â At a minimum, her religious convictions should be accommodated.â€ One can always count on Staver to throw up a legal-sounding smoke screen.
The lawÂ doesÂ require that employers, in this case the State of Kentucky,Â reasonably accommodate an employee’s religious beliefs or practices,Â unless, that is,Â doing so would cause significant burden on the business (or state office). By not issuing marriage licenses, a regular dutyÂ of a county clerk, Davis’ refusal is more than aÂ significant burden.
The federal court ruling was not enough to stop or satisfy Liberty Counsel from pressing the issue further. Staver filed an appealÂ to the 6th Circuit Court on Friday asking for “asylum for her (Davis’) conscience.” The Supreme CourtÂ waited until late Monday to deny her request.
YesterdayÂ morning Davis continued to deny the issuance of marriage licenses “under God’s authority.”
It should be noted that Davis’Â Christians beliefs areÂ notÂ universal Christian beliefs. There are many Christian denominations which have long sought the right to marry same-sex couples. A growing number of Christians with otherwise traditional tenets, me included, do not agree with Davis’ restrictive view of Christian marriage.Â
Staver’s advice to Davis has been ridiculous and obviously unjustifiable legally all along. Liberty Counsel did however create another public “martyr” who they can only dream will be carried off in shackles, photographers snapping away, for her faith.
Ca-ching, ca-ching,Â ca-ching.
In the end though, it is county clerkÂ Kim Davis who will suffer the longer term consequences of her misguided actions.Â
No worries. It’s all good in the bigger picture for Mat Staver, Liberty Counsel, and ADF. They continue to lurk and look for the next high-profile conservative Christians offering a potentially money-raising “persecution” story.
These lawyersÂ will do as they always do â€”Â create faux Christian martyrs out of those who break the law, tell partial truths about the drama, couch their endemic discrimination against the LGBT community in biblical terms, all while asking for donations to fight the encroaching “gay agenda.”
Photo: “Mat Staver joins Catholic and Evangelical leaders who pledge obedience to God when the State directly conflicts with higher law.”
Image via Facebook
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Watch: Bill Barr Has Talked to Jan. 6 Committee Says Chairman
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.
— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) January 23, 2022
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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.
According to the report, Cohen told the MSNBC host, “You may recall that there was the district attorney’s case here for Trump Soho where it was either Don or Ivanka was in very big trouble as a result of lying about the number of units that had been sold.”
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You can read more here.
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“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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