It really should come as no surprise that there is no depth to which Bryan Fischer will not sink in his relentless assault against all things gay, as he is now openly promoting the idea that the HIV virus is not the cause of AIDS.
Fisher dedicated two segments on his program yesterday to interviewing Peter Duesberg, author of "Inventing the AIDS Virus," who asserts that the idea that HIV causes AIDS was a scheme concocted by scientists in order to get research grants and that the symptoms attributed to AIDS are really caused by massive recreational drug use among gay men.
Yesterday, Alan Colmes and Rich Lowry had a rather contentious spat on Fox News after Lowry took offense to Colmes' assertion that voters would sour on Rick Santorum's candidacy once they "get a load of some of the crazy things he’s said and done, like taking his two-hour-old baby who died right after childbirth home and played with it for a couple of hours so his other children would know that the child was real." Lowry took offense to Colmes' characterization of the incident and the two engaged in a tense argument about it ... and hours later, Colmes announced that he had contacted Santorum directly and apologized for his remarks.
Fox News radio host and political commentator Alan Colmes went so far beyond the line of decency yesterday that he should immediately be terminated by Fox.
Rick Santorum's wife gave birth to a boy who died just two hours after his premature birth. The Santorums brought the body of the infant home so that their other children could see him, hold him and recognize the precious worth of every life.
Colmes has since apologized in private to the Santorums for his "hurtful comment." But his comment goes way beyond hurtful. It is uncaring, callous, deeply offensive and beneath contempt. He owes the entire viewing audience of Fox News an on-air apology followed immediately by his resignation, whether forced or voluntary.
He may have made things right with the Santorums, but he has not made things right with America. He is unfit to serve any longer on Fox.
Bryan Fischer, Colmes' frequentsparringpartner, discussed the issue on his radio program today, insisting that Colmes' remarks were "inexcusable" and utterly "beyond the pale":
So there's Alan Colmes, first of all, just showing complete callous indifference - I mean, this is cold. Remember, this is somebody who fancies himself a prince of compassion. Alan Colmes would see himself as the very paragon of tolerance, the very paragon on compassion, everybody in America ought to be as passionate as Alan Colmes. Shows absolutely callous disregard for the Santorums, for their feelings, for how they process the death of a son, for the way they handled it. Just inexcusable, beyond the pale.
We've sent an action alert out today ... let Fox News know how your feel about the fact that they are paying Alan Colmes beau-coup dollars to host a radio program and to be a political analyst on their cable news outlets; that's what he was doing yesterday, offering some kind of expert political commentary. We think he ought to be fire;, I think he ought to be fired; I think this is so far beyond the pale that Fox needs to do something about this,
That's just unbelievable to me, that is just so far beyond any boundary or any standard of common decency that Fox has just got to do something about that. But you just see in Alan Colmes, in his body language, just the arrogance of those that consider themselves the elite in our culture and I think something needs to be done about that and something needs to be done about that right now.
The irony, of course, is that the AFA is a bona-fide hate group and Fischer himself is one of the Religious Right most consistent purveyors of unmitigated bigotry who regularly complains that any attempt to hold him accountable for his statements is literally a hate crime.
On Tuesday, the founder of the far-right American Family Association Don Wildmon endorsed Newt Gingrich for president, citing Gingrich’s stringent attacks against the judiciary and the need to stop Mitt Romney from winning the Republican nomination as reasons for his endorsement. Wildmon told AFA spokesman Bryan Fischer, who has harshly criticized Gingrich, that he was originally “ecstatic” about Rick Perry but decided against supporting him due to his poor debate performances and said that only Gingrich can stop “the homosexuals and the liberals” from their plot to “destroy the family” and “the whole of Western Civilization.”
Deace: Newt, tell me what you think this endorsement means and what you want this endorsement to say to undecided voters out there?
Gingrich: No one has been a more consistent fighter for Christian freedom to actually practice our religion, for the right to life, stopping abortion, for the protection of marriage between a man and a woman, and I think the degree to which the Rev. Wildmon has been a national leader in these areas, the 2.5 million people who recognize his leadership through his association, this is a very important signal that if you are a social conservative and you’re interest is making sure that we have a social conservative as the Republican nominee, the Rev. Wildmon from his many years of experience is telling you that Newt Gingrich is the one candidate who could potentially stop Mitt Romney. I think that is a very, very powerful and a very important message, and I think it will make a big impact not just in Iowa but across the country. Having watched his work for a number of years, I am very grateful for this kind of support and the courage he’s shown standing up in the public arena for the values that we believe in.
Wildmon said that the election is so serious that if either President Obama or Mitt Romney wins we will “lose this country”:
Wildmon: If we don’t have a strong leadership that knows and believes in maintaining our Judeo-Christian heritage, we’re going to lose it. And let me tell you, don’t load up any buses because there’s nowhere else in the world that what we have can be replicated. It’s gone and it is gone forever if Obama or Romney wins the presidency, it’s gone and it’s gone forever. That’s a strong statement, I’m not trying to scare anybody, I’m not trying to say I got any kind of intellect, but I just see it and it’s there and if we lose this country, it’s gone and it can never again be replicated.
When Deace asked Wildmon how the Religious Right leader came to terms with a supporting a candidate whose last two marriages ended following extramarital affairs, Wildmon pointed to his own conversations with Gingrich where he repented for his past indiscretions and to California pastor Jim Garlow, who has pressed evangelicals to forgive and support Gingrich. Wildmon also reminded Deace that “Paul was a murderer, Moses was a murderer, David was an adulterer and for all intents and purposes a murderer,” and were still forgiven and lifted up by God:
Deace: I keep getting questions about someone that has had the past on a personal level that Newt has had, with even Newt has himself described as moral failings in his past, and whether or not we as evangelicals can support somebody like that and do we look hypocritical, I know you obviously wrestled with this, so let me ask you that question.
Wildmon: Yes I think that is a legitimate question, my friend Jim Garlow could answer that more in depth, but let me answer what I can. Go back four years ago, I was sitting in a room in Washington and we asked Newt to come out and discuss the situation, and we did and he said that he had repented, at that time this was four years ago now and if I remember there was a tear or two, I think the man was genuine, I think he was honest, I think he meant what it said. Now and I say this with Newt sitting there, only Newt knows Newt’s heart other than God, I think that he has paid his dues, I think he has accepted his forgiveness, God has forgiven him, I forgive him, let’s go on to do what’s best for the country.
I am supporting Newt because I think he’s the best fellow for the job, as far as sin, we know what’s in Newt’s past, Paul was a murderer, Moses was a murderer, David was an adulterer and for all intents and purposes a murderer, the man has paid his dues, he’s been forgiven by God. Am I supporting him? Yes I am. Why? I’ll say it again; I think that everything considered he is the best candidate for the office. Look—I’m taking a lot of heat, a lot of people already tell me ‘I’m not going to support you anymore’—you only live once and you got to do what you believe to be right and best, and you suffer the consequences thereof, and I think this is the right and best what I did. I hope some of my influence in the state of Iowa will help the Speaker carry the state.
Pat Buchanan joined Tim Wilmon of the American Family Association today where he warned that the left wants to “convert America into a monstrous replica of the United Nations General Assembly where everyone is equal in every way.” While promoting Suicide of a Superpower, Buchanan lamented that America may become “an egalitarian society” that is part of a vision rejecting what people see as America’s “racist, bigoted, sexist, imperialist, colonialist, homophobic” past:
Wildmon: Why do these folks have such hostility for our traditions and for the Christian religion? Where does this come from?
Buchanan: Well I think it certainly flourished in the 1960s on the campuses, around the mid-1960s, and the ground had been prepared by many in the faculty. The basic feeling on a part of a lot of these people is that the old traditionalist America was racist, bigoted, sexist, imperialist, colonialist, homophobic and every other adjective you can think of, and they look upon that past with detestation. They want to change and alter what was a sort of, basically a Western Christian country, part of the West, part of European civilization, and they want to put an end to that. They want to create a new nation that is of all the races, cultures, creeds of every continent and country on earth and an egalitarian society, and frankly a country that has never before existed. They want to convert America into a monstrous replica of the United Nations General Assembly where everyone is equal in every way, and it’s a utopian idea and I think that it is incompatible with the existence of the country we grew up in. That is what is happening, but there is a deep, ingrained hostility of the country that we were raised in for the reasons that I mentioned.
Newt Gingrich today nabbed the endorsement of Don Wildmon, the founder of the American Family Association, which is now under the leadership of his son, Tim. Wildmon praised Gingrich’s aggressive attacks on the judiciary, saying, “Newt Gingrich recognizes the threat to our country posed by judges and lawyers imposing values upon the country inconsistent with our religious heritage, and has proposed constitutional steps to bring the courts back in balance under the constitution,” and Gingrich welcomed the endorsement by calling Wildmon “one of the most important leaders in the country in the battle to uphold our founding principles.”
Wildmon endorsed Gingrich, who has admitted that extramarital affairs were reasons that ended his first two marriages, despite previously arguing that “adultery is destructive to relationships, to families, and to society.”
After founding the National Federation for Decency, which later became the AFA, Wildmon led censorship campaigns against shows like Seinfeld and Murphy Brown, along with other movies, television programs and music he found objectionable.
Wildmon also has claimed that “liberals” and those who support the “homosexual agenda” all “hate Christians,” and in his recent book Speechless, he claimed that “homosecularists” are trying to “persecute Christians” and “insert homosexual propaganda into the schools.” He warned that the “homosecularist elite” is using “the schools to indoctrinate children” through “pro-homosexual and anti-Christian” programs to combat school bullying. Wildmon also praised the Boy Scouts for not wanting to “expose its young members to lonely sodomites.”
But Wildmon’s endorsement doesn’t mean others in the AFA have had less than kind words for Gingrich.
Recently in a phone interview I challenged former Speaker Newt Gingrich with the query If the men of the Republican Revolution and their Speaker couldn't keep their marriage vows why should we now entrust, say, that Speaker who looks to be making a run for the presidency?
It wasn't much of an answer he gave. Evangelicals in power must do better in the future, and cultural conservatives in particular must surely know that the public will hold them to higher standards.
John the Baptist famously rebuked a politician of his day for his problematic marital history, and Mr. Gingrich rightly comes in for similar censure.
King David of the ancient kingdom of Israel kept his throne after his adulterous liaison with the beautiful Bathsheba, but a consequence of his unfaithfulness was that the sword never left his house, never left the dynasty he left behind nor the nation his descendants ruled. There were lasting consequences to the body politic for his moral failures, no matter how repentant he was and no matter how forgiven by God.
A candidate or president with such a troubled past would have little or no credibility in talking about the sanctity of marriage and the sanctity and importance of the intact family unit. “Who are you,” folks would say, “to be lecturing us about the importance of family?”
And there certainly would be fallout for the American family and the institution of marriage if such a flawed individual served as our nation’s leader.
UPDATE: Wildmon today appeared on Focal Pointwith Bryan Fischer where he explained that while he was initially “ecstatic” about Rick Perry’s candidacy, he decided that because of the Texas governor's disastrous debate appearances his candidacy “cannot recover.” Wildmon said that electability matters because “we are facing the most critical election this nation has ever seen, the stake in this election is Western civilization.”
When discussing Gingrich’s extramarital affairs, he said that Gingrich “seemed genuinely repentant,” telling Fischer, “we are voting for a president, not a pope, and there is a difference.” He added that his endorsement was personal and does not reflect an endorsement by the American Family Association.
Later in the show, Wildmon and Fischer praised Gingrich’s fight against “judicial tyranny” and Wildmon cited Gingrich’s attacks on judges as one of the major reasons he endorsed him: Wildmon said “the whole of Western Civilization” is in jeopardy because “when you destroy the family, which the homosexuals and the liberals now are trying to do, then you've destroyed the foundation here. All of this business about homosexual marriage, well let’s go to Massachusetts where it started, did the people vote on it? No they didn’t. What happened? Judges, judges, liberal judges passed the law, made the legalization of homosexual marriage in Massachusetts.”
American Family Association spokesman Bryan Fischer said today on Focal Point that gays and lesbians could endanger the military and represent a risk to the country’s security because of mental health problems in the gay community. Researchers have consistently linked prejudiceandstigma against gays and lesbians to increased feelings of depression and anxiety, and Fischer skews such research to make it seem that gay people are intrinsically unstable. Such claims are no surprise coming from Fischer, who has warned that the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell was a “treasonous” act that would leave America “with a military comprised of nothing but sexual deviants.” Fischer said today that gays “represent an increased risk to national security,” calling openly gay service in the military “foolish.” While referencing the Bradley Manning case, Fischer said that “if you have compassion for people, you want homosexuals to get help,” and that gays should be prohibited from handling “sensitive national security information.”
On his radio program on Friday, Bryan Fischer weighed in on the death of Christopher Hitchens and explained that God sent Hitchens to Hell as an expression of His love for him:
Let's assume for the sake of argument that Christopher Hitchens maintained his resolve and did not turn, he did not repent, he died an unrepentant and defiant atheist. That would mean today, if the Scriptures mean anything, that he is in Hell today.
But here's my point, the point I was making earlier is that if he is, if Christopher Hitchens is, in fact, in Hell, he's there because God loves him. Not because God hates him but because God loves him. And I explained what I mean by that. What I mean by that is that God loves us enough to, in the end, give us what he insist on having. If we are determined to have our own way then God, in the end, is going to give us what we insist on having, because that's what you do for people you love.
Now if you think about it, and I mention this earlier, to me it would not be a loving thing for God to say to Christopher Hitchens "you spent your entire life, you're still defying me. You died in defiance, you still are in defiance as you stand before me. You don't want anything to do with me. You don't want anything to do with my son. You don't want anything to do with my Gospel. You don't want anything to do with word of God. You don't want anything to do with other people that are followers of me." It would not be a loving thing to compel someone like Christopher Hitchens to spend the rest of eternity in a place that he hated, a place that he does not want to be, a place that he has no desire to be, a place that he has spent all of his life resisting, condemning, avoiding, refusing to embrace. To me, that's not love, that would be a form of cruelty.
Whether it is fornication or whether it is adultery, [the Apostle] Paul says there ought to be laws against those behaviors since they are so destructive to human beings. They represent a great danger to human health, adultery destroys families, it chews up children it creates poverty. Adultery does enormous social damage, it does enormous social harm. Sexual immorality, it leads to the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases, that makes it a public health issue. It leads to out-of-wedlock pregnancies, out-of-wedlock births, those children have to be born somewhere, you've got costs involved, you have now single moms bringing children into the world with no husband, no father around, that puts a strain on welfare budgets. That means fornication, sexual immorality, is properly a matter of public policy concern. It ought to be against the law.
Mitt Romney has attempted to thread the needle on whether gays and lesbians have a right to serve openly in the military, saying he staunchly opposed the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell but is not willing to reinstate the policy. In a 1994 letter to the Log Cabin Republicans, Romney called Don’t Ask Don’t Tell “the first of a number of steps that will ultimately lead to gays and lesbians being able to serve openly and honestly in our nation's military,” but then in 2007 Romney claimed he originally found the policy “silly” but effective, and has since criticized attempts to repeal it. In a June debate Romney dodged a question on whether he would reverse the repeal, until he finally told the Des Moines Register editorial board this week that he would oppose the restoration of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.
Elaine Donnelly of the Center for Military Readiness recently started the Military Culture Coalition along with other conservative leaders to oppose repeal efforts, denounced Romney for his position of supporting Don’t Ask Don’t Tell in principle but not its reinstatement:
Donnelly questioned Governor Romney's comments to the Des Moines Register, noting that "The military does not work that way. Flawed policies that impose heavy 'complicating features' on the backs of military men and women cannot and should not be switched on and off, depending on the direction of political winds or promises made to LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) activists of either political party."
She added, "Sound policies that reinforce morale and readiness should be maintained at all times. A long list of what Governor Romney calls 'complicating features' were caused when the 2010 lame-duck Congress voted for Obama's LGBT Law and related policies. Current problems and those yet to come are no more acceptable now than in the midst of a shooting war."
Sandy Rios of Family-Pac and the former head of Concerned Women for America mocked Romney for the “audacity” to say he is more conservative than other candidates while revealing a complete lack of conviction regarding his views on open service in the military:
As the issue of allowing gays to openly serve in the military raged last year, Mitt Romney let it be known he roundly opposed the idea. He was outraged ... incensed. Many conservatives were certain this was the real Mitt revealing himself after years of having to pretend to embrace gay rights as governor of Massachusetts. With this messy business of his position on gay rights out of the way, they could at last breathe a sigh of relief and support the man they thought looked and sounded presidential and had the credentials to turn the economy around.
But now that has all changed. In an interview with the Des Moines Register editorial board last Friday, the former Massachusetts governor explained that it wasn't the concept of having gays openly serve in the military that had troubled him ... only the fact that the change was being made in a time of war. Now that the conflict is over, he would not, as Commander in Chief, do anything to change it.
As if to drive his point further, Romney added that Gingrich's "unreliability" hadn't just been 14-15 years ago, but in the last 2-3 years. Yet Mitt Romney's latest leap from conservatism had only taken place a few days prior. What kind of audacity does it take to stand before a news agency editorial board and brag in the face of the evidence that you are the most conservative candidate?
One could go further back with Romney's liberal/conservative iterations, but these are current examples which, in the case of gays in the military, goes back not a few years but a few days. Surely it is a quantum leap to assign him the mantle of conservatism in the current race.
Truth and honesty are inconvenient at times, but they are as much a part of conservative values as any position on the economy or national defense. Dishonesty and deceit are basic disqualifiers -- and bend as we may to excuse the inexcusable, in Romney's case, they are very hard to ignore.
Not to be outdone, Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association went after Romney and Ron Paul, who voted in favor of repeal last year, calling them “non-starters as candidates”:
If evangelical Christians simply vote their values, there is simply no way they can cast a vote for someone who is in favor of legitimizing homosexual behavior in the military.
In the GOP field, there are just two candidates who support the presence of sexual deviancy in our armed forces: Mitt Romney and Ron Paul.
Romney told the editorial board of the Des Moines Register last Friday that he is just fine with sexually aberrant behavior in the military.
Bottom line: for values-driven voters who claim to be conservative and to draw their values from the Judeo-Christian tradition, Ron Paul and Mitt Romney are both likely to be - and should be - non-starters as candidates. If a voter only claims to be a social conservative but isn’t one in fact, then a vote for Romney or Paul is not likely to be a problem.
Back in September, administrators at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center updated the hospital's visitation policy and, in an effort to "respect patients' religious practices and preserve their privacy," included a provision that stipulated that "no religious items, (i.e. Bibles, reading materials and/or artifacts) are allowed to be given away or used during a visit."
The new language went unnoticed for several several weeks until the document was forwarded to the Family Research Council, which immediately alerted members of Congress like Rep. Steve King, who then denounced the policy on the House floor, claiming that it prevented priests from offering communion to wounded soldiers and family members from bringing a Bible to a loved one.
Officials at Walter Reed quickly rescinded the policy, saying it had been incorrectly worded and should have been more thoroughly reviewed before it was released.
Rep. King was on AFA's "Today's Issues" program today with Tim Wildmon and Bryan Fischer to discuss the issue and explained that, in the end, this policy change was really all President Obama's fault:
How does this happen? How does the President of the United States have the time to have all of these things changed all the way down to these levels and levels well below this level? And I've watched it happen in the transition of the Chief Executive officer a couple of times in the past and it happens this way: when you put somebody in place as Commander in Chief, Barack Obama, then he fires everybody that he can and puts in political appointments. Those political appointments then lord it over everybody beneath them and that philosophy of the Commander in Chief just flows down across the entire Executive Branch of government and it cascades through there in a matter of a couple of months. And then the people who like their jobs and will slide into their desk in the morning and they'll be thinking "what would Barack Obama do if he were sitting at my desk, doing my job today?" I want to please him so I'm likely to , I'm going to write something that is compatible with our Commander in Chief's attitude."
That kind of thing does change the culture; that's why we need a new president so badly. You cannot fix these one at a time - you can fight them off and you can sometimes take a little back, but there's another hundred or two or three hundred of those out there going on simultaneously that we didn't catch, that we weren't able to reverse. You just simply can't play Whack-a-Mole endlessly and save our American religious liberty, you've got to replace the Commander in Chief who will then appoint new people and have the right principles cascade down from the White House throughout the entire Executive Branch and that affects the culture of the whole United States of America.
American Family Association spokesman Bryan Fischer said that the ad’s hostile reception on YouTube proves that Perry is a good candidate for Christian conservative voters: “Perry’s ad had triggered an astonishing 637,738 dislikes to just 19,792 likes by 10:53 Eastern time this morning, clearly stamping him as the candidate the vengeful, hate-filled, vitriolic homosexual lobby wants to destroy,” Fischer wrote today. “If you’re looking for your values candidate, conservatives, you may have just found him.” On his radio show last week, Fischer even said that AFA founder and chairman emeritus Don Wildmon, who led The Response prayer rally with Perry, called the ad “the best political ad he’s ever seen.”
Wildmon’s son Tim, the current head of the AFA, agreed with Todd Starnes of Fox News that the ad might help Perry consolidate support among conservative voters and propel Perry to the top of the polls. Starnes predicted “that we are going to see a bump in the poll numbers as the result of this ad, they may not give this ad credit but if you see a rise in the numbers I think it is because of this ad,” saying that it “articulated” how evangelical Christians in America feel:
The Family Research Council even promoted the ad to members and dismissed concerns that it would backfire on the Texas governor, whom they claim is in touch with “everyday Americans”:
Rick Perry's latest ad was intended for Iowa, but thanks to the national media, it's airing on every network in America. A number of pundits are panning the spot for its bold social conservative themes, which they insist will hurt the Texas Governor's chances. "I'm not ashamed to admit that I'm a Christian," Gov. Perry says, "but you don't need to be in the pew every Sunday to know there's something wrong in this country when gays can serve openly in the military but our kids can't openly celebrate Christmas or pray in school." The ad is called "Strong," and that's the kind of message it sends on issues like religious freedom. "As President, I'll end Obama's war on religion. And I'll fight against liberal attacks on our religious heritage." True, Gov. Perry probably wouldn't win the media's vote with that kind of platform--but he does stand to benefit with everyday Americans who are tired of seeing their values in the line of fire under this administration.
MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell and Pastor John Hagee have been engaged in a war of words lately, stemming from O'Donnell's characterization of Hagee's infamous sermon in which he preached that God used Adolf Hitler and the Holocaust as a means of getting Jews to return to Israel.
On Friday, Buster Wilson decided to weigh in on the dispute on his "AFA Today" radio program where he called on the network to "clean the stable" of hosts like "the admitted lesbian Rachel Maddow" and Lawrence O'Donnell:
National news networks do have ... a tendency for mischaracterizing the works, motivations, and the actions of religious people. Do you notice that? Well, I'll tell you, one of the worst, one of the worst is MSNBC. When you take the likes of Chris Matthews, and when you take Lawrence O'Donnell and Rachel Maddow, you have some of the most anti-Christian, anti-religious people on journalistic television today. No question about it.
We need to let MSNBC know it's time for them to clean the stable out of those people who are so anti-Christ, so hateful. When you listen to the admitted lesbian Rachel Maddow, when you listen to Lawrence O'Donnell and some of the things that Chris Matthews says and some of the other people that they've had to chasten on their network with either getting them off the network or giving them time off without pay, this network needs, I say this network needs to do a little cleaning up in their house because absolutely it's out of phase with the reality of what's going on in the rest of the world.
As general manager, Wilson presumably has some say over the barrage of hate-filled bigotry that Fischer unleashes on a daily basis on his radio station ... so perhaps he ought to get his own house in order before he starts telling others that they need to do some house cleaning.
Every day, Bryan Fischer dedicates the first segment of his radio program to reading from the Bible and discussing the meaning of the passages before ending with prayer.
On yesterday's program, he was reading from 2 Corinthians 11 in which Paul warns Christians not to be deceived by a false prophet who "preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached [or] a different gospel from the one you accepted."
Fischer said the same thing holds true today with Islam and Mormonism, both of which preach false messages about Jesus as he went on to pray that those who preach a different Jesus will have "the veil of unbelief and error" lifted from their minds and be made aware "of every way in which they have been deceived by Satan":
Following his endorsement and introduction of Rick Perry at the Values Voter Summit, Robert Jeffress went on Focal Pointwith Bryan Fischer to chastise Romney's Mormon faith, arguing that he is not a "true, born again follower of Christ." He said that only Perry can defeat "the most pro-homosexual, most pro-abortion president in history."
"It is not Christianity, it is not a branch of Christianity," Jeffress said, "It is a cult." Jeffress went on to explain that many evangelical Christians will not vote for Romney because he is a Mormon and therefore not "indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God." He even claimed that Romney's Mormon faith "speaks to the integrity issue" as it explains why he has reversed his position on abortion rights, among other issues.
This weekend, nearly every major GOP presidential candidate, along with the top two Republicans in the House of Representatives, will speak at the Values Voter Summit, an annual gathering of the leaders of the Religious Right movement to integrate fundamentalist Christianity and American politics.
Our efforts in the past to get anyone within the GOP or Religious Right to condemn Fischer's relentless bigotry have not amounted to much, mainly because nobody within the movement seems to be particularly bothered by it, which is why GOP leaders continue to appear on his radio program and on stage with him at Religious Right events.
My argument all along has been that the purpose of the First Amendment is to protect the free exercise of the Christian religion.
One evidence that [the Founding Fathers] were not dealing ... they weren't even intending to deal with non-Christian religions is what they did with Mormonism in the latter part of the nineteenth century. Mormonism - they call themselves by the name of Christ, but it is not an orthodox Christian network of churches, it just is not. Mormonism is not an orthodox Christian faith. It just is not. They have a different Gospel, they have a completely different definition of who Christ is and so forth, I mean, the list could be multiplied endlessly.
And it was very clear that the Founding Fathers did not intend to preserve automatically religious liberty for non-Christian faiths, so when Mormonism came along, they practiced polygamy, they believed in polygamy, just like Muslims do today. It was a part of their revealed religion. God had commanded Joseph Smith to have multiple wives and commanded Joseph Smith to go tell your wife Emma, look you gotta room, I want my son Joseph to be able to have as many wives as he wants so you're just going to have to accept it. So God is telling Emma through Joseph Smith, look you're just going to have to live with this deal. So multiple wives in the Mormon Church until 1890 when the Mormon Church told their folks to obey the law.
The Mormon Church, by the way, has never denounced the practice of polygamy. It has not. What it did in 1890, if you go back to the Doctrines and Covenants, what the Mormon Church did is they advised - it wasn't even an order - they advised the members of the LDS Church to obey the law which said one man, one woman, period. So my guess is that if those that are trying to legalize polygamy, and they are working on it right now ... [Fischer cites court case pushing for recognition of polygamy and says it the same as using courts to push for gay marriage] ... If there is some activist court that says you have to recognize polygamous marriages in your state, you're going to start seeing the LDS church, I believe go back to the exercise of polygamy. If it's legal, because all they told their folks is obey the law, if the law says you can have multiple wives, I believe the LDS Church will be out in the front of the pack.
I mean, not everybody in the LDS Church is going to do it any more than all the members of the LDS Church ever did it. It was a minority even in Joseph Smith's day - I mean, Brigham Young set some kind of world record for number of wives, I mean he was up there in Muhammad territory frankly. But most Mormons didn't do it, it was just a small percentage that had the resources to be able to do it. But I think it will come back, it will come back pretty vigorously in the Mormon Church, again, because all the church fathers said in 1890, just obey the law. Well, if the law says you can have multiple wives, they'll be back.
At next week's Values Voter Summit, Mitt Romney is scheduled to take the stage immediately before Bryan Fischer, an American Family Association (AFA) spokesman with a long and shocking record of bigotry against gays and lesbians, American Muslims, Native Americans and other minority groups. Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, Herman Cain and Rick Santorum are also scheduled to speak at the event, which is sponsored by the anti-gay Family Research Council, the AFA, and other Religious Right groups. PFAW is urging these candidates for our nation's highest office to condemn bigotry.
People For the American Way’s African American Ministers in Action, a nationwide network of African American clergy, urge Texas Gov. Rick Perry to make sure his Response rally brings communities of faith together with prayer, rather than creating divisions based on fear and intolerance.