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GOP Platform Committee (Accidentally) Endorses Discrimination Against Married Opposite Sex Couples

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Republican Lawmakers Secretly Amend Anti-Gay First Amendment Defense Act, Forget To Tell Platform Committee

Lawmakers Neglect to Tell Top Advocates Including NOM, Catholic Church, GOP Platform Committee They Changed the First Amendment Defense Act

On Tuesday the GOP Platform Committee finalized the draft of the 2016 GOP platform, including a provision that calls for the passage of the First Amendment Defense Act.

Thirteen months ago, days before the Supreme Court ruled same-sex marriage is a constitutional right, Republican Senator Mike Lee (photo, center) and Republican Congressman Raul Labrador (photo, right) introduced the First Amendment Defense Act. FADA, as it’s known, was designed to allow anti-gay people, groups, organizations, and businesses to ignore the law and discriminate against same-sex couples and LGBT people merely by claiming their religious beliefs require them to do so. 

FADA was introduced June 17, 2015.

It has been dormant ever since. No hearing. No debate. Nothing, until this week, when its sponsors changed the text, and, for some unknown reason (partisan politics) the House Oversight Committee held a hearing on the bill that has never had a hearing. That hearing, coincidentally, was scheduled days after the Orlando mass shooting that left 49 people in a gay bar dead. It was scheduled for the one month anniversary of that anti-LGBT hate crime/mass shooting/terror attack.

The original bill reads, in part:

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Federal Government shall not take any discriminatory action against a person, wholly or partially on the basis that such person believes or acts in accordance with a religious belief or moral conviction that marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman, or that sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage.

[Bolding ours]

For reasons unknown, although likely because the bill is clearly unconstitutional, Labrador and Lee changed the text of the bill to this:

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Federal Government shall not take any discriminatory action against a person, wholly or partially on the basis that such person believes, speaks, or acts in accordance with a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction that—

(1) marriage is or should be recognized as the union of—

(A) two individuals of the opposite sex; or

(B) two individuals of the same sex; or

(2) extramarital relations are improper. 

[Bolding ours]

They also didn’t bother to tell anyone that their bill now allows people and companies to discriminate against those who believe marriage is only the union of two individuals of the same sex.

For example, a small business owner under FADA could fire someone after learning they had just been married to someone of the opposite sex, if they claim to have a sincerely held belief that marriage is only the union of two individuals of the same sex.

The Family Research Council found out, and after heavily advocating for FADA, today pulled their support.

The change itself is, as Box Turtle Bulletin’s Jim Burroway notes, “a sham and a pretty bizarre one at that… Because, you know, there are tons of people that strongly disagree with the Supreme Court ruling upholding marriage equality for opposite-sex couples, right?” 

The bill is still (likely) unconstitutional. 

Amusingly, having not noticed the change, the GOP Platform Committee,  the National Organization For Marriage (NOM) and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops are still heavily advocating for the bill.

WATCH: Hero Jim Obergefell Tells House Republicans Why First Amendment Defense Act Is Discriminatory

Tuesday night, after the change was made, NOM President Brian Brown wrote: “I’ve got some great news: A critical committee of the US House of Representatives today held a pivotal hearing on the First Amendment Defense Act (FADA), setting the stage for it to move forward to the full House!”

(That’s of course so false it’s embarrassing. There was no vote, the bill was assigned the House Ways and Means Committee, not the House Oversight Committee, and there’s been neither a hearing nor a vote scheduled.)

And the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) posted this glowing endorsement Tuesday as well:

Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone of San Francisco, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage and Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore, chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty, issued the following statement:

Today the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will hold a hearing on the First Amendment Defense Act (FADA). The USCCB has been vocal in support of this legislation, as it would provide a measure of protection for religious freedom at the federal level. FADA is a modest but important step in ensuring conscience protection to faith-based organizations and people of all faiths and of no faith who believe that marriage is the union of one man and one woman, protecting them from discrimination by the federal government. The increasing intolerance toward religious belief and belief in the conjugal meaning of marriage makes these protections essential for continuing faith-based charitable work, which supports the common good of our society. Faith-based agencies and schools should not lose their licenses or accreditation simply because they hold reasonable views on marriage that differ from the federal government’s view.

The First Amendment Defense Act is likely unconstitutional, definitely immoral, and wholly unnecessary. That its sponsors would play fast and loose with its text days before a hearing on it shows it’s nothing more than a fundraising tool for them.

It will never become law, at least as long as a Democrat holds the White House.

EARLIER:

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

‘Enough is Enough’: House GOP Leaders Set to Piss on Graves of Orlando Victims

Anti-LGBT Activist Group Pushing Congress to Pass Sweeping First Amendment ‘Religious Freedom’ Bill

 

Image: Screenshot via YouTube

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

Die-Hard MAGA Trump Supporters in Arizona Think ‘It’s Very Possible’ States Will ‘Decertify’ the 2020 Election

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Donald Trump’s most recent rally in Arizona brought many opportunities for his supporters to explain why they think the former president will be back in office any day.

Politico spoke to a few MAGA folks on the ground at the event and got their thoughts on what’s next in the Trump movement.

“I hope states decertify the election. I want to hear him say it’s over, we are ready to move on and hold a new election,” Politico cited Ray Kallatsa from Tucson. “I do think it’s possible, very possible.”

His thoughts echo those of pillow mogul Mike Lindell, who spoke to the crowd ahead of the former president. He cited QAnon language.

“Can you feel the storm building? It’s America,” he said using the allusion of “the storm” which is part of the conspiracy group’s messaging.

The storm, “refers to excessive social conflict that is predicted to occur prior to society reaching the point of ‘The Great Awakening,’ explained Murray State University.

See the photos from the event at Politico.

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'WINDOW INTO WHERE THIS IS ALL HEADED'

‘Avalanche of Lies’: Trump’s Arizona Speech Smacked Down by CNN Host

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The morning after Donald Trump rehashed all of his complaints about the 2020 presidential election that saw him lose to President Joe Biden and then attacked fellow Republicans, a CNN host dismissed his words as an “avalanche of lies.”

During the speech, the president also asserted that his “Stop the Steal” rally crowd was massive, telling the crowd, “They talk about the people that walked down to the Capitol, They don’t talk about the size of that crowd. I believe it was the largest crowd I’ve ever spoken before, and they were there to protest the election.”

After sharing clips of Trump’s ranting about critics within his own party who aren’t buying into his election lies, host Abby Phillip cut to the chase and also noted the former president’s defense of the Capitol insurrectionists.

“I don’t actually recommend people listen to the avalanche of lies last night,” she stated, “but it’s notable how much effort went into defending these January 6th defendants and saying that they were being held as political prisoners. It’s a window into where this is all headed for Republicans.”

Watch below:

 

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CRIME

Sedition Indictments Reveal the DOJ Is Looking Beyond the Jan 6th Insurrection: Former US Attorney

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Appearing on MSNBC on Saturday morning, former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance explained that a deep reading of the federal seditious conspiracy indictments filed against eleven members of the Oath Keepers revealed that the Department of Justice is looking at more than the Jan 6th insurrection.

Speaking with host Ali Velshi, Vance suggested more indictments are likely to follow.

“One of the keys to understanding this indictment is it doesn’t look at January 6th as just one day,” she began. “The conduct starts shortly after the election and continues to January 6th. We now seemingly have a more firm answer to the direction whether the DOJ is looking at January 6th as a standalone day or is this continuing course of conduct surrounding the big lie.”

“The fact they are looking at the longer spectrum of conduct is good news for people who want to see people who were involved in the day’s events held responsible for all of the efforts to interfere with the election, not just the violence that manifested on January 6th” she continued. “This is prosecutors continuing to move up that ladder of responsibility. They’ve now hit a point with people involved in a definitive way and the violence on that day. The question is whether some of these individuals and other people who have been indicted will decide to cooperate with prosecutors and if they decide to cooperate, what information they may have to share.”

Watch below:

 

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