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Trump Political Appointee and Anti-LGBTQ Christian Right Activist Sues Biden After Refusing to Resign

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Roger Severino

Roger Severino, a former Trump appointee at the Dept. of Health and Human Services who targeted LGBTQ Americans in his religious crusade as head of the Office of Civil Rights is suing the Biden administration for firing him from his appointment by the former president to an obscure but powerful federal government agency known as ACUS.

He is refusing to resign, despite being a political appointee.

“President Biden’s attempt to remove me contrary to law exposes his lofty promises of healing and uniting all Americans as nothing more than cynical manipulation,” Severino defiantly told Newsweek.

“Because I am not one to be bullied, not even by the President himself, I will not resign my duly commissioned post and look forward to seeing how President Biden tries to justify his vindictive actions in court.”

Severino’s lawsuit claims that “President Biden has no constitutional authority under Article II to terminate Mr. Severino’s appointment to the Council.”

“The Council” is the Administrative Conference of the United States (ACUS), which holds sway over how U.S. government regulatory agencies operate.

Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern, who covers the courts and the law, writes on Twitter that “Severino’s substantive argument … seems to suggest that ACUS is part of no branch of government, but instead sits outside the executive branch on some heavenly plane.”

He calls the lawsuit “bonkers, BONKERS, just eye-melting galaxy-brain-level drivel.”

Severino spent his four years in the Trump administration working tirelessly to kill protections, many installed by the Obama administration, for LGBTQ patients, effectively promoting discrimination based on gender and sexual orientation. He also expanded opportunities for people of faith to claim anti-religion discrimination by creating the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division at HHS.

At HHS Severino called Obama-era protections for transgender patients “unnecessary.”

And in defending an anti-LGBTQ “religious freedom” regulation, Severino told reporters, “Patients want doctors who match their values.”

As NCRM has previously reported, Severino has been called a “radical” anti-LGBTQ religious right activist by the Human Rights Campaign. He once served as CEO and counsel for the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, a religious right non-profit that opposes separation of church and state. He has also served as the Director of the DeVos family’s Center for Religion and Civil Society in the Institute for Family, Community, and Opportunity.

He is married to Carrie Severino, president of the Judicial Crisis Network, which spent millions to install President Donald Trump’s extremist judges, including reportedly tens of millions of dollars to help secure Trump’s three Supreme Court nominees.

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NOT HOW THIS WORKS

‘How Can You Have Unity if You’re Taking Away Everything We Like?’: Fox News Blasts Biden for Scrapping Trump Policies

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Conservatives all over the country have been using President Joe Biden’s call for unity to attack him by criticizing the new president’s decision to implement policies different from his predecessor. Nowhere was that more prevalent than on “Fox & Friends” Thursday morning, which devoted several segments to the claim that Biden shouldn’t change anything Trump did if he really wants unity.

“Our country’s got to come together,” the Fox News morning show’s cohost Ainsley Earhardt told viewers, “and Joe Biden said yesterday, ‘I want unity.’ He talked about that in his speech, but the first thing he does, the first order of business is to walk in, sit down at the table, and he has 17 executive orders really wiping away much of what President Trump did. So, his supporters are saying, ‘How can we have unity if you’re taking away everything that we like?'”

Crooked Media’s editor in chief sums up Republicans’ false argument:

Watch:

 

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Fox News Orders On-Air Anchors to Not Call Joe Biden ‘President-Elect’ When They Call the Election: CNN

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Fox News has ordered its on-air anchors and hosts to not call Joe Biden the “President-Elect” when the conservative cable network calls the race for the Democratic former vice president.

CNN senior media reporter Oliver Darcey reports he and CNN chief media correspondent  Brian Stelter have obtained internal Fox News memos that “say Fox should ‘stay away’ from using the description.”

“The memos emphasized that Fox should report moves by Trump’s legal teams to challenge the results. ‘We will report both sides until there is further guidance,’ one memo said.”

 

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Where Is Betsy DeVos? Education Secretary Hiding in ‘Sprawling’ Michigan Mansion While Demanding Schools Reopen: Report

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Where is Betsy DeVos? The Education Secretary is under fire for demanding schools reopen while not giving them the assistance they need to protect students, teachers, administrators, and staff, yet she is working remotely from her “sprawling” 22,000 square foot “waterfront estate with a round-the-clock security detail paid for by taxpayers,” NBC News reports. That security cost taxpayers $25 million over the past year.

DeVos “insists that it isn’t her job to help localities determine how to [re-open] safely.”

The Education Secretary’s’ public schedule “has been mostly empty for the past several weeks, including no events on her public schedule for this week,” NBC’s Heidi Przybyla reveals.

Yet DeVos “has been holding events not listed on her public calendar, including several sponsored by the conservative Federalist Society, according to Federalist Society postings. She has also participated in a few events related to private schools and advocacy for vouchers, including a roundtable July 23 at a private Christian school in Ohio and two events in the Carolinas with Vice President Mike Pence.”

Przybyla says DeVos is “not touring those public schools that she’s demanding reopen.”

The Education Secretary also “declined to appear at a House coronavirus subcommittee hearing on safely reopening K-12 schools ‘so she could explain why she is pressuring schools to fully reopen, despite the risks,’ James Clyburn of South Carolina, the No. 3 House Democrat, said Thursday.”

Here’s what some are saying:

 

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