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GOP Platform Committee Votes to Support Anti-LGBT ‘Religious Freedom’ First Amendment Defense Act

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Overwhelming Support for Anti-LGBT Discrimination

The Republican National Committee’s platform committee on Monday passed a wide swath of anti-LGBT amendments that were even more extreme than many of their own members had anticipated. Among them was a vote for an amendment calling for the First Amendment Defense Act to become law. FADA, as the bill in Congress is called, coincidentally is the subject of a hearing by the powerful House Oversight committee Tuesday morning at 10 AM.

The Amendment was easily passed by the GOP platform committee. A Family Research Council vice president tweeted the news:

The legislation is a so-called “religious freedom” bill that would give any person, along with most companies and corporations the right to discriminate against LGBT people, especially same-sex couples, if they say the have a deeply-held religious belief against LGBT people. 

Drafted in response to the Supreme Court’s 2015 marriage ruling, the First Amendment Defense Act would also gut protections LGBT people and same-sex couples have. It would allow employers to deny spousal and parental rights, including those given under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act. It would allow non-profits and even government contractors the right to discriminate against anyone who is LGBT, if not doing so would violate their sincerely held religious beliefs.

Along with passing the amendment calling for FADA to become law, the GOP platform committee passed a plank that effectively says children raised in a “traditional” family are better off than children raised by same-sex parents or single parents.

Subcommittees voted for amendments that call for to the Bible being taught in schools and voted for transgender people to use the restroom of the gender they were assigned at birth. The full platform committee voted to keep a call for a ban on same-sex marriage in their 2016 national platform, and voted to support anti-LGBT conversion therapy. They also voted to define marriage the union of one man and one woman, only. 

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Watch: Trump Stunned When Asked if He Regrets ‘All the Lying You’ve Done to the American People?’ at ‘News’ Conference

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President Donald Trump was asked an unusual question during his supposed “news” briefing Thursday evening.

“After three and a half years, do you regret at all, all the lying that you’ve done to the American people?” HuffPost White House correspondent S.V. Dáte asked. The briefing was carried live on Fox News, but not on MSNBC or CNN.

“All the what?” a startled President Trump asked.

“All the lying, all the dishonesties,” Dáte repeated.

“And who is that?” Trump, still stunned, asked.

“You have done,” Dáte repeated again.

“Ah… Go ahead, please,” Trump said, pointing to another reporter, refusing to answer the original question.

Watch:

Minutes earlier, Dáte posted these important tweets:

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Trump Calls for ‘A Certain Freedom’ to Wear Masks or Not – and Lies That Biden’s Coronavirus Policies Are ‘Anti-Scientific’

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President Donald Trump tried to contrast his response to the coronavirus pandemic, which has led to the deaths of nearly 170,000 Americans, against former Vice President Joe Biden, who has called for strong measures far earlier than Trump ever did.

On Thursday Biden called on the nation’s governors to issue across the board mask mandates. Trump, in a campaign speech delivered under the false pretense of a coronavirus news conference, attacked his Democratic rival, and falsely claimed Biden had called for a national mask mandate instituted by presidential decree.

Trump, who misuses the power of his office regularly, claimed he did not think a President has the power to mandate mask wearing (he or she does.)

“Every governor should mandate mandatory mask wearing. The estimates by the experts are that it will save over 40,000 lives in the next three months. Forty thousand lives, if people act responsibly,” former Vice President Joe Biden said Thursday, referring to scientific studies. “It’s not about your rights. It’s about your responsibilities as an American.”

Trump offered a different take on mask-wearing, saying “maybe they’re great and maybe they’re good and maybe they’re not so good, but frankly, what do you have to lose?” and adding, “we want to have a certain freedom,” to wear or not masks, “that’s what we’re about.”

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Trump’s Postmaster General Removing Hundreds of Mail Sorting Machines – Before the Biggest Vote By Mail Election Ever: Report

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President Donald Trump’s Postmaster General is quietly removing mail sorting machines and has scheduled the removal of  hundreds more from USPS facilities across the country. The action, which is both unprecedented and unexplained, comes barely months before the 2020 November election, which begins in weeks when early voting starts in some states.

“In many cases, these are the same machines that would be tasked with sorting ballots, calling into question promises made by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy that the USPS has ‘ample capacity’ to handle the predicted surge in mail-in ballots,” VICE’s Motherboard reports. “Motherboard identified 19 mail sorting machines from five processing facilities across the U.S. that either have already been removed or are scheduled to be in the near future.”

That may not seem like a lot, and as Motherboard notes, “the Postal Service operates hundreds of distribution facilities around the country.”

But The Guardian’s voting rights reporter Sam Levine has posted what he reports is a letter and attached spreadsheets detailing where literally hundreds of USPS machines are slated to be removed, from where, and when.

NCRM examined the spreadsheets, which refer to the removal of a total of 671 mail sorting machines with names like Automated Flat Sorting Machine (AFSMs), and Delivery Bar Code Sorters (DBCSs).

These are used to sort mostly letter-sized, flat mail pieces – the exact kind that, say, voting ballots would be sent in.

The letter, which was sent to the President of the American Postal Workers Union, cites only the “reduction in letter and flat mail volume,” but does not say why the machines are being removed now. The schedule calls for all 671 machines to be removed by September 30, which in some states is when or just after early voting begins.

 

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