Jonathan Saenz of Texas Values, who has called this week’s marriage equality ruling in Texas a “hollow victory,” yesterday called it “one of the most egregious forms of judicial activism of our generation.” “The federal judiciary is out of control,” Saenz told Family Research Council head Tony Perkins on yesterday’s edition of Washington Watch.
He promised that there would be an “epic battle” to defeat marriage equality in Texas.
Similarly irate, Perkins said that judges and the Obama administration believe they can “tear away at the foundation of the rule of law” when it comes to the issue of marriage equality, which he warned will lead to “anarchy” and a “breakdown of society altogether.”
In an interview with Janet Mefferd yesterday about his call for the impeachment of Attorney General Eric Holder, pastor William Owens insisted that President Obama is “anti-Christian” and the worst president in at least the last 75 years.
“We elected the wrong black president,” Owens said. “His strategy was, ‘If I get the Catholic Church, I can get all the churches because of their size; let’s knock them off, we’ll get all of them.’ He’s anti-Christian, he stands up for no Christian values whatsoever.”
Owens told Mefferd that he’s refraining from calling for the impeachment and removal of President Obama because he wants the president to leave a legacy of backing marriage equality and being the worst president ever: “Since he took this bold position and he wants to leave a legacy, we’re gonna see that he does leave a legacy, that he does leave the legacy that he did more to demoralize this country than anybody, any president, any administration since I’ve been here and I’m seventy-five years old.”
The Treasury Department warned in the midst of last year’s government shutdown [PDF]: “A default would be unprecedented and has the potential to be catastrophic: credit markets could freeze, the value of the dollar could plummet, U.S. interest rates could skyrocket, the negative spillovers could reverberate around the world, and there might be a financial crisis and recession that could echo the events of 2008 or worse…. Because the debt ceiling impasse contributed to the financial market disruptions, reduced confidence and increased uncertainty, the economic expansion was no doubt weaker than it otherwise would have been.”
One problem might be that Tea Party leaders seem to have no clue what they are talking about.
Tea Party politicians dismissed concerns about failing to raise the debt limit — with one Tea Party-aligned congressman arguing that such a move would help the economy — and didn’t seem to grasp the fact that “raising the debt ceiling simply lets Treasury borrow the money it needs to pay all U.S. bills and other legal obligations in full and on time” and isn’t a “license to spend more.”
Similarly, a Bloomberg News poll found that 93 percent of Tea Party Republicans believe the federal budget deficit is growing, even while it is rapidly shrinking.
Myth #2: Tea Party Wants Entitlement Cuts
We keep hearing about how the Tea Party will lead a push to cut entitlement programs, but Tea Party members are disproportionately entitlement program benefactors. A New York Times/CBS poll found that Tea Party members are more likely than others to claim that they or a family member receives Social Security benefits or is covered by Medicaid, and 62 percent believe “the benefits from government programs such as Social Security and Medicare [are] worth the costs of those programs.”
According to a McClatchy-Marist poll, 76 percent of Tea Party supporters oppose Social Security and Medicare cuts while 70 percent said they were against cuts to Medicaid.
“[W]hat many of the Tea Party candidates have found is that when push comes to shove, their backers want to protect their entitlements as much as the next guy,” writes Shikha Dalmia of the Reason Foundation. “In fact, much of the fury of the Tea Partiers against government stimulus and bailouts might have less to do with any principled belief in the limits of government and more to do with fear of what this will do to their own entitlements.”
As Alex Seitz-Wald reported: “We know that in fact the IRS targeted lots of different kinds of groups, not just conservative ones; that the only organizations whose tax-exempt statuses were actually denied were progressive ones; that many of the targeted conservative groups legitimately crossed the line; that the IG’s report was limited to only Tea Party groups at congressional Republicans’ request; and that the White House was in no way involved in the targeting and didn’t even know about it until shortly before the public did. In short, the entire scandal narrative was a fiction.”
Many Tea Party leaders -- including Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Louie Gohmert, Michele Bachmann, Mike Lee, Jim DeMint and Glenn Beck -- are also favorites of the Religious Right. The GOP victories in the 2010 midterm election brought about what the Daily Beast called “one of the most religiously conservative [House of Representatives] in recent history” and Republican politicians in Congress and state legislatures immediately pursued a crackdown on abortion rights.
Pew found that just as “the Tea Party is much more Republican and conservative than the public as a whole… Tea Party supporters also tend to take socially conservative positions on abortion and same-sex marriage.” Tea Party activists oppose marriage equality and abortion rights at rates nearly identical to Republicans at large, and are just as likely to cite religion as the driving force on their stances on such issues.
A 2013 American Values survey observed that the majority of Tea Party activists “identify with the Christian Right,” and a study by political scientists Robert Putnam and David Campbell found Tea Party members to be “disproportionately social conservatives” with a penchant for the “overt use of religious language and imagery.” “It thus makes sense that the Tea Party ranks alongside the Christian Right in unpopularity,” they added.
Myth #5: Tea Party Has Wide Popularity
Tea Party politicians like to fashion themselves as champions of a broadly popular movement that has supporters across partisan lines. Bachmann thinks the Tea Party represents “virtually 90 percent of America” and a poll of Tea Party supporters found that 84 percent agree that “the views of the people involved in the Tea Party movement generally reflect the views of most Americans.” Beck even believes that most Americans are in the Tea Party and to the right of the GOP.
Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) said this week that he will join efforts to impeach of Attorney General Eric Holder over his stance on marriage equality, citing a petition by the Coalition of African-American Pastors and accusing Holder of trying to “thwart” the Constitution by not defending the Defense of Marriage Act.
Of course, the Obama administration would be far from the first administration to decline to defend an unconstitutional law, with Republicans and Democrats alike doing the same in the past.
Several Republicans have already proposed a resolution seeking Holder’s impeachment.
“More lawlessness from a lawless administration; Attorney General Holder should not advise other attorneys general to violate their oaths of office. These elected officials have a duty and a solemn obligation to defend their states’ laws and Constitution - not allow ideology and politics to cloud their legal decisions. Whatever one’s personal opinions on the Second Amendment, the Internal Revenue Service, controlled substances, the freedom of the press, or even marriage, an Attorney General simply can’t pick and choose the laws or parts of the Constitution he or she would like to defend.
“In recent years, I have grown increasingly concerned by Holder’s actions – and those of others in the Obama Administration - to disregard the laws and the Constitution they have sworn to defend. I am not alone in these concerns. Dozens of my colleagues have called upon Holder to resign. Dozens have asked the President to remove Holder from office. Additionally, on June 28, 2012, 255 members of the U.S. House of Representatives held Mr. Holder in Contempt of Congress. It is the Attorney General’s job to uphold the Constitution and the law - not ignore it, nor rewrite it, nor encourage other attorneys general to thwart it.
“This has gone on far too long. The lawlessness at the Department of Justice - of this Administration - must end now. That is why I am announcing today my co-sponsorship of H.Res. 411, which introduces five articles of impeachment against Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr.”
Trinity Broadcasting Network host Kim Clement says that God is raising up a leader who will “kill the giant of socialism” and “the giant of human secularism.”
In a performance on Saturday, the musician/self-proclaimed prophet told his audience that this godly politician will come up against Satan, who is “doing everything in his power to put a witch in the White House” with a “Jezebel” spirit.
Concerned Women for America senior fellow Janice Shaw Crouse is once again saying that she is furious that President Obama would dare criticize the harsh Ugandan law that makes being gay a crime punishable with life imprisonment.
In a statement today, Crouse tried to claim that she doesn’t necessarily support the Ugandan law, she just thinks that people are wrong to oppose it.
She writes that Obama’s denunciation of the anti-gay law shows that he only cares about “special interest campaigns” and “special rights, not human rights,” and represents “an affront, even a mockery, of those Judeo-Christian values that have been the foundation of virtually all Western civilizations across time and cultures.”
Last week, I was called by a reporter who said he wanted to interview me about President Obama’s statement that “homosexuality is a human right.” He said that the president’s recent comments about the situation in Uganda elevated homosexuality to the level of a “human right” or a “universal fundamental freedom.” My remarks were simply that the president of the United States has the responsibility to represent the entire nation. When he states his personal beliefs and values and presents those as representative of the United States of America, the full force of his office is behind those statements. It is clear that the beliefs of the president about “human rights” are controversial in his own country and offensive to many both in the U.S. and abroad, and serve to promote the political homosexual agenda worldwide. Claiming that homosexuality is a “human right” is an affront,¬¬ even a mockery, of¬¬ those Judeo-Christian values that have been the foundation of virtually all Western civilizations across time and cultures.
That critique is not an endorsement of Ugandan law. Concerned Women for America (CWA) supports the human rights of everyone, including homosexuals. The president should have criticized brutality (though he has not done that in some other notable international incidents) without embracing and promoting the political agenda of a relatively small special interest group.
The basic principles of religious liberty and freedom of speech are the context in which I criticized Mr. Obama. In this respect, Mr. Obama has been “arrogant,” and his actions have constituted “cultural imperialism.” One of Concerned Women for America’s (CWA) core issues is “national sovereignty,” and we defend the sovereignty of our own country, as well as that of other nations. We are an American organization, and our involvement in other nations is solely on the issue of national sovereignty and the other core issues (like Family and Life) that we share with our international colleagues. We analyze the statements of public officials, including the president, as they touch on our core issues; we have suggested that the president should forcefully condemn nations that violate the civil rights of homosexuals and women, but that approach is significantly different from the president’s endorsing and promoting the special interest campaigns of “homosexual rights” and “women’s rights” activists — campaigns that are political in nature and ask for approval rather than acceptance, that ask for special rights, not human rights.
Scott Lively said yesterday that a global Satanic “conspiracy” is “homosexualizing the world” and only a “revolution” of gay rights opponents can stop it.
In an interview with Religious Right talk show host Janet Mefferd, Lively insisted that gay rights victories are “proof of the conspiracy, we’re talking about the elites represented in the federal judiciary, across the top strata of our society — I don’t think there is really much difference between the Republicans and Democrats at that level — and they are imposing a global socialist agenda on all of us.”
“These federal judges are acting against all legal precedent in favor of this brand new, invented category of human rights; in four thousand years of human rights jurisprudence, sodomy has never been recognized as a human right,” Lively said. “Yet now, not only is it recognized as a human right but it’s trumping legitimate human rights like religious freedom and family values. Nothing short of a revolution is going to stop this.”
“It’s just astonishing how rapidly they are proceeding in homosexualizing the whole world,” he lamented.
Lively called the gay rights movement a demonic push to bring about the Last Days: “This is the moral issue of the End Times, it’s clearly a spiritual phenomenon, in the space of just fifty years this movement has gone from being illegal — homosexuality, homosexual sodomy was illegal in every country of the world except for Sweden which legalized it in in 1938 — and now this tiny group of people, 1 to 2 percent of the population, has more power in the legislatures and the courtrooms of the world than the Christian church does.”
“The most powerful countries of the world have almost completely been given over to the principalities behind this agenda,” Lively added. “Christians really need to recognize that this is spiritual warfare and it cuts right to the heart of what it means to be a human being created in the image of God.”
Lively added that the gay rights movement has moved the world into an “age of apostasy” and anti-gay activists must be ready to “give up our lives if necessary.”
He later called on activists to speak “into the face of the demons that are grabbing a hold of our society and tearing it down” and not to listen to “weenies“ who have fallen for “the lie of the pit of Hell.”
The pastor also praised Uganda’s president for “standing up for the truth” against “the powers of the earth” by signing his country’s new draconian anti-gay law.
Southern Baptist pastor Robert Jeffress warned today that churches that don’t embrace right-wing politics are going to “surrender the control and the direction of this country to the godless, immoral infidels who hate God.”
He made the remarks at a National Religious Broadcasters convention press conference that also featured Family Research Council president Tony Perkins and pastor Rafael Cruz, the father of Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. During the press conference, Paul Stanley of the Christian Post asked Jeffress about pastor John MacArthur, a conservative megachurch pastor who at times has criticized the Religious Right.
Jeffress responded that MacArthur’s views would have silenced pastors protesting Nazism: “It’s that kind of thinking among German pastors that allowed for the Holocaust. I would ask anybody who would use that reasoning: ‘Then you would’ve stayed quiet while Adolf Hitler was slaughtering the Jewish people, six million of them?’”
Jeffress also predicted that soon all same-sex marriage bans will fall and as a result, the government will implement “hate speech” laws that would take away the free speech rights of gay rights opponents and put people in jail.
The Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty criticized a similar bill in Georgia that the group warned would turn religion into “an automatic trump card.”
The Mississippi ACLU said the bill may even go farther than the legislation passed in Arizona: “We are worried that this bill is broader than the Arizona bill. The bill would allow the government finding of discrimination by defining ‘burden’ to include withholding government benefits.”
Senate Bill 2681, the Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act, does not restore or expand religious freedom. It is simply a license to discriminate.
-In its current form, this law could allow people to argue that their religious beliefs exempt them from complying with laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, sex, religion, color, and national origin.
-This law would give private individuals and businesses a free pass to discriminate. This will allow businesses to deny basic services under the guise of religious freedom.
-This law would not protect against government funding of discrimination. By defining “burden” to include withholding of government benefits, religious organizations and individuals may use the statute to challenge exclusion from governmental programs. This could result in government funding of not only religious ends and activities, but also discrimination.
-This bill would do nothing more than allow the use of religion to discriminate and burden hardworking businesses with the threat of frivolous lawsuits.
An Arizona-based Tea Party group is rallying around the state’s ‘right-to-discriminate’ legislation, SB 1062, by claiming that “the First Amendment protects only the practice of the Christian faith.”
The Williams Tea Party of Coconino County defended the anti-gay bill on its website, alleging that “the First Amendment protects only the practice of the Christian faith” and that the First Amendment “protects the right of those of the Christian faith to not serve those who are clearly abhorrent to that faith.”
The group also attacked a pastor who joined a protest against the bill, saying that the pastor must not have read the Bible.
The First Amendment protects only the practice of the Christian faith.
The Arizona Republic gathered the twenty, or so, protestors against S.B. 1062 close together for a photo to place on the front cover of their Thursday edition. The gathering together is an attempt to show that thousands of protestors came to their demonstration.
In the center of the photo they placed a guy who just happens to be able to afford the tab-collar clergy shirt with a sign about how religions should be against this legislation. I am not sure from which Internet “U” this person obtained his certification, but they certainly had no requirement to read the Bible.
The “columnists” at the Republic are in full swing typing out their indignation at the “discrimination.”
Of course, when you are dealing with a group of people who get their Constitutional training from the Salon and Russia Today web sites, it is difficult for them to understand that this legislation should never have been written. You see, there is already a law that protects the right of those of the Christian faith to not serve those who are clearly abhorrent to that faith.
It’s called the First Amendment.
The First Amendment was meant only to protect the Christian faith. When the founders spoke of religion, they meant the Christian religion. They did not have to keep saying the Christian religion because everyone knew that is what they were talking about.