Governor Mitt Romney today announced his selection of Congressman Paul Ryan as his running mate. People For the American Way President Michael Keegan issued the following statement:
“Of all the things we’ve learned about Mitt Romney in this campaign, the most striking is his willingness to cave to the extreme Right at every opportunity. His selection of Paul Ryan as his running mate just underscores that.
“From his support of ‘personhood’ legislation that would criminalize some forms of birth control, to his crusade to gut Medicare, cut Pell Grants and protect subsidies for Big Oil, Paul Ryan is the ideal Vice President for the far Right. The fact that Ryan’s budget raises taxes on working families and slashes programs helping the middle class in order to give huge breaks to the rich is just par for the course.
“If there was any question that Mitt Romney’s campaign is catering to billionaires, there shouldn’t be anymore. This is the Koch brothers' dream ticket. But for ordinary Americans, the Romney-Ryan agenda would be a nightmare.”
In an interview with Tony Perkins on Washington Watch Weekly, former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell slammed the Obama campaign’s effort to expand early voting procedures in Ohio, saying that the President is running “probably the most bareknuckle campaign I’ve seen”.
Blackwell also accused democrats of exploiting the “Voter ID controversy to gin up their base” and energize minority voters in their favor. The controversy surrounding early voting in Ohio centers on a new special exemption that the state extends to military voters. The Obama campaign filed suit, seeking to restore early voting procedures for all citizens, including servicemen and women.
Despite decrying the so-called “bareknuckle” tactics of the Obama campaign, Blackwell is no stranger to political combat. His 2006 gubernatorial campaign smeared his opponent as gay, and Blackwell worked tirelessly to suppress minority voting in Ohio in the 2004 presidential election.
Perkins: To me it suggests that they’re pretty desperate, that they see every vote as being, as counting, in the state of Ohio, that they cannot spare a single vote in that state.
Blackwell: Well you’re absolutely right, and just think about, there is an alarming pattern. They are actively opposed, and in the case of what I’m getting ready to say, the administration is actively opposed to Voter ID. And they are using the Voter ID controversy to gin up their base because they are running a base turnout campaign and its imperative that they get a high voter turnout from blacks and Latinos and that they get a substantial disproportionate share of their vote, so they are basically creating the conservative republican boogeyman by saying, you know, voter ID requirements suppress votes. They then, on the other hands, they’re suppressing the votes on the military because they know the numbers are against them. So you begin to see, or the Obama campaign and their friends going after chick-fil-a. You know, it is, this is, probably the most bareknuckle campaign that I’ve seen from a sitting President, it is Chicago-style politics, and there are no rules. It’s a no-man’s land.
As we noted earlier, it has not been a very good week for David Barton, so this seemed like a good opportunity to pull together a list of some of the most absurd things that he has said over the last year or so just to give people who might not be particularly familiar with Barton or his work a better sense of just what sort of claims he likes to puts forth.
Yesterday we posted a list a ten demonstrably false claims Barton has made in recent months but this list, though also filled with falsehoods, focuses more on the sorts of patently ridiculous claims that Barton is prone to making:
Given this sort of record, is anyone surprised that a publisher that agreed to print a book written by Barton ultimately had to recall it?
The US Embassy in the Czech Republic, as part of the State Department’s new LGBT rights initiative, is supporting a pride festival in Prague “to address discriminatory behavior based on sexual orientation and to promote a tolerant civil society and equal opportunities in the Czech Republic.” Already irate over Secretary Hillary Clinton’s speech on LGBT rights, American Religious Right activists joined their European, African and Latin American allies to denounce the Obama administration for “aggressively promoting the ‘gay’ agenda internationally” and leading a campaign of “cultural imperialism” [PDF]:
At the directive of the president of the United States, Washington is aggressively promoting the “gay’’ agenda internationally, including same-sex “marriage” and the stigmatization and marginalization of any who object to the same.
The Obama’s administration’s embrace of “same-sex marriage” has been overwhelmingly rejected by the American people. There have been 32 state referenda on marriage. In every one of them, voters endorsed the natural definition of marriage (a man and a woman). The North Carolina vote, on May 8, was 61% in favor of natural marriage.
It stands to reason, then, that anything which undermines the family – including changing the definition of marriage – is a breach of the State’s responsibility to protect this indispensable institution which precedes government and makes a stable and free society possible.
The Madrid Declaration of World Congress of Families VI (May 25-27, 2012) --which was unanimously adopted by more than 3,200 delegates from 72 countries --provides, in part: “We affirm the natural family to be the union of a man and a woman through marriage for the purposes of sharing love and joy, propagating children, providing their moral education, building a vital home economy, offering security in times of trouble, and binding the generations.”
Regarding “gay rights,” those caught up in this lifestyle have the same rights as other citizens. This does not include the “right” to force others to validate a lifestyle they find objectionable, for religious or other reasons. It also does not include the right of men to marry men and women to marry women.
The foregoing pseudo-rights do not advance human freedom and dignity but debase them.
We can not imagine a worse form of cultural imperialism than Washington trying to force approval of the “gay” agenda on societies with traditional values.
The list of signatories is mighty long, including former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay; Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver and Matt Barber; American Family Association’s Tim Wildmon; Catholic League’s Bill Donohue; Vision America’s Rick Scarborough; Rabbi Daniel Lapin; American Civil Rights Union’s Robert Knight; Concerned Women for America’s Janice Shaw Crouse; Pastor Jim Garlow; WND’s David Kupelian; TFP’s C. Preston Noell III; conservative activist Richard Viguerie; World Congress of Families’ Don Feder; Media Research Center’s Brent Bozell; Traditional Values Coalition’s Louis Sheldon and Andrea Lafferty; and the Southern Baptist Convention’s Paige Peterson.
Other activists like Peter LaBarbera of Americans For Truth About Homosexuality, Scott Lively of Defend the Family International and Sharon Slater of Family Watch International are also among the signatories, as is Mission America’s Linda Harvey, who believes people should refuse care for themselves and their children from openly gay doctors and nurses:
Another signatory was Yehuda Levin has claimed that gay marriage caused last year’s D.C. earthquake and linked gay rights to the 9/11 attacks, Hurricane Katrina, the Tsunami and the 2010 Haiti earthquake:
The list even included former chaplain Gordon Klingenschmitt, who performs gay exorcisms:
Last week, People For the American Way Foundation launched a new report, “12 Rules for Mixing Religion and Politics,” which offers guidelines for policymakers and advocates seeking to bring faith into political debates.
Joining us at a launch party for the report and a discussion of the issues it raises were Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison, the first Muslim in Congress; Sister Simone Campbell, director of the Catholic social justice group NETWORK; and Rabbi David Saperstein, director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism.
Here are some photos of the event from People For Foundation’s Dylan Hewitt:
Sister Simone Campbell talks with People For’s COO, Nick Ucci
People For President Michael Keegan, Rep. Keith Ellison, and Senior Fellow Peter Montgomery
Michael Keegan and Rep. Keith Ellison
Sister Simone Campbell and Rabbi David Saperstein
Rabbi David Saperstein
Rep. Keith Ellison and Minister Leslie Watson Malachi, director of People For the American Way Foundation’s African American Ministers Leadership Conference.
On yesterday's installment of "AFA Today," Buster Wilson returned to the topic of Chick-fil-A to declare that the company has been successful because "they live according to God's word" and have kept God's command to meditate on His law day and night.
And that prompted Wilson to issue a not-so-subtle warning to "Big Gay" activists who oppose Chick-fil-A's anti-gay views they they are destined for Hell and therefore must "read the Bible and they need to try to believe it because it's going to have a bearing on their soul one day":
Yesterday on the 700 Club, Pat Robertson said that activists who don’t want Chick-fil-A on their college campus due to the company’s anti-gay advocacy should keep quiet: “I defy these homosexuals to bring forth a baby from that part of the anatomy which they concentrate on, when that happens I will change everything I’m saying; until that happens, I wish those demonstrators would shut their mouth.” Robertson warned that legal abortion and homosexuality are violations of God’s law and are “the reasons why land will vomit out its inhabitants.”
Robertson: It’s a chicken sandwich, it’s a piece of white meat chicken between two pieces of white bread, it’s also a milkshake, now we’re going to go have demonstrations over that? But you know something, I was reading today in Leviticus, which is the law of the Old Testament, but it lays out the reasons why land will vomit out its inhabitants and it goes through a category of stuff we are calling Constitutional rights: killing babies, offering them to Moloch, and it says it is an abomination for a man to lie with a man as with a woman. It’s what it says. That is the moral law that God set forth and now we’ve got people at a university petitioning because somebody said I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman. I defy these homosexuals to bring forth a baby from that part of the anatomy which they concentrate on, when that happens I will change everything I’m saying; until that happens, I wish those demonstrators would shut their mouth.
Jerome Corsi worked his way up the ranks in Republican circles by swiftboating John Kerry, pushing birther conspiracies with Sheriff Joe Arpaio and writing books such as Where’s The Birth Certificate and Where’s The Real Birth Certificate Lately though, he has been peddling the conspiracy that Obama had a same-sex relationship with his Pakistani roommate, and was even married to him:
is gay is nothing new on the far right, and so it was no surprise to see that Scott Lively, the Religious Right hero for his work as an anti-gay activist in Uganda in trying to criminalize homosexuality, is pushing the claim himself:
Much like birtherism, which started out on the fringe but has since became a mainstream idea within the GOP, maybe it is only a matter of time before more and more conservative activists demand Obama “prove” he isn’t gay.
As we noted yesterday, it has been a rough couple of days for the David Barton as first his shoddy scholarship was exposed by NPR and then the publisher of his latest book announced that it has "lost confidence" in it and was ceasing publication and distribution.
The Tennessean caught up with Barton to get his reaction to these developments and the criticism that his work has been receiving and he offered up the most perfectly Bartontonian defense one could have imagined:
Barton said he met with a different group of scholars recently and they approved of his work.
“I can’t tell you how many Ph.D.’s were in the room,” he said.
But he would not give any names, saying the scholars hadn’t given their permission for him do so.
While we are not surprised by Barton's defense, we have to admit that we are a bit shocked by the utter silence from the Religious Right to these developments because we have been searching high and low and have so far been unable to find any evidence of anyone stepping up to defend him or his work.
Where are Glenn Beck, or Michele Bachmann, or Mike Huckabee, or Newt Gingrich or any of the others who routinely hail Barton as America's greatest historian? Will nobody stand up and defend Barton in his hour of need?
American Family Association spokesman Bryan Fischer does not dispute Nancy Pelosi’s story that she felt the spirits of feminist leaders like Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Mott, Alice Paul and Sojourner Truth after she became the first woman to be Speaker of the House. However, Fischer says “if she did hear something, what she heard was the voice of demonic spirits…that was the voice of a demonic spirit pretending to be Susan B. Anthony.” He later falsely claimed that Anthony and Stanton were both anti-choice activists.
On his radio program yesterday, Bryan Fischer proclaimed that Lisa Miller had a responsibility to God to defy court orders granting visitation and custody rights to her former partner, Janet Jenkins, and kidnap her daughter and flee the country.
[When] the girl came home, she suffered nightmares, she was wetting the bed, she was harming herself, she gave every indication of being sexually molested while she'd been in the company of this lesbian. She told her mom that she had bathed naked with this lesbian person to whom she's not even related, hadn't seen her in like four years and she's taking baths without any clothes on with this lady at five and a half.
So she's coming home clearly very disturbed, agitated emotionally by these visits and the mom said I'm not going to do it, I'm not going to put my child back into that environment. And the Vermont judge says that if you don't submit your child to an abusive environment, it was emotionally abusive, it was sexually abusive and the judge was saying, look if you don't put your child in that environment, I'm going to take your child away from you altogether and I'm going to award sole custody to the lesbian.
That was the plan; in fact the judge ruled you gotta turn her over January 1, 2010, you got to hand her over to this lesbian household where there's a proven record of child abuse.
Today has not been a good day for David Barton. First, NPR ran a devastating piece exposing his biased and shoddy scholarship and now the publisher of his book "The Jefferson Lies" has announced that it is pulling his book:
The Thomas Nelson publishing company has decided to cease publication and distribution of David Barton’s controversial book, The Jefferson Lies: Exposing the Myths You’ve Always Believed about Thomas Jefferson, saying it has “lost confidence in the book’s details.” (See “The David Barton controversy,” Aug. 8.)
Casey Francis Harrell, Thomas Nelson’s director of corporate communications, told me the publishing house “was contacted by a number of people expressing concerns about [The Jefferson Lies].” The company began to evaluate the criticisms, Harrell said, and “in the course of our review learned that there were some historical details included in the book that were not adequately supported. Because of these deficiencies we decided that it was in the best interest of our readers to stop the publication and distribution.”
Barton is currently preaching out in Hawaii, but we imagine he is not getting much rest or relaxation as he deals with this string of bad news.
Maybe he will be a little more careful about making demonstrably false statements from now on.
In honor of all the attention that David Barton's shoddy scholarship is currently receiving, we thought we'd take some time to pull together a list of some of the demonstrably false statements that he has made in just the last several months alone.
Keep in mind, these are not simply crazy things that he has said - like life begins before conception or that Jesus opposed the Minimum Wage or that the government should regulate gay sex - but rather verifiably false claims that can be easily refuted with a basic Google search.
It is too bad that Barton refuses to engage in debates because it would be nice to see him defend his own claims instead of always just complaining that people are attacking him because of his Christian faith.
NPR’s Barbara Bradley Hagerty profiled David Barton yesterday on “All Things Considered,” and in the devastating profile debunked many of the claims made by the right-wing pseudo-historian. Messiah College professor John Fea pointed out in the story that Barton, who will be a “a Texas representative to the GOP Platform Committee” at the upcoming Republican National Convention,” is a political activist who tries to present himself as a historian: “He’s in this for activism. He's in this for policy. He’s in this to make changes to our culture.”
In typical Barton fashion, he said any of his critics only “come after me” because “they disagree with me, and my religious faith, and my view on America.” Of course, Fea and other Barton critics quoted in the story, Grove City College professor Warren Throckmorton and Rev. Ray McMillian of Cincinnati’s Oasis Church, are evangelical Christians. But since Barton can’t defend his own discredited “research,” he simply plays the victim and says he is being attacked for his patriotism and Christian beliefs.
Liberty University Law School dean Mat Staver, who made Barton required reading for his students, said he “would put him against any historian and would have no question who would win in a debate.”
Of course, Hagerty notes, Barton “has a policy of not debating anyone.”
“We looked up every citation Barton said was from the Bible, but not one of them checked out,” Hagerty writes.
Or that the Founders “already had the entire debate on creation-evolution,” long before Charles Darwin was born:
NPR also covered Barton’s belief that he will influence the minds of America’s future leaders through his work shaping in the Texas textbooks, “it’s in the pipe coming down”:
That is also the dream of Mike Huckabee, who wished that “all Americans will be forced, forced — at gunpoint, no less — to listen to every David Barton message”:
MassResistance has updated its report, “What same-sex ‘marriage’ has done to Massachusetts,” and the group’s head Brian Camenker appeared on VCY America’s Crosstalk to go down the list of all of the so-called negative impacts of marriage equality.
Anyone who thinks that same-sex "marriage" is a benign eccentricity which won't affect the average person should consider what it has done to Massachusetts since 2004. It's become a hammer to force the acceptance and normalization of homosexuality on everyone. The slippery slope is real. New radical demands never cease. What has happened in the last several years is truly frightening.
Camenker rehashed the typical claims about how gay rights is leading to anti-Christian persecution, but also told host Vice Eliason that marriage equality is responsible for an uptick in the state’s domestic violence cases. Experts say that domestic violence has increased nationwide, likely connected to economic stress, Massachusetts included.
But Camenker says gay couples are responsible for the increase, arguing that “the rates of domestic violence among homosexual couples is many, many times that of heterosexual couples,” which he alleges is a manifestation of “the dysfunctional nature of homosexual relationships.”
However, Jane Doe Inc. The Massachusetts Coalition Against Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence writes, “Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender individuals are abused at approximately the same levels as heterosexual couples, but the abuse may be exacerbated by social isolation caused by societal oppression and discrimination.” The Center for American Progress also notes that “studies have found that domestic violence occurs among same-sex couples at comparable rates to straight couples,” not “many, many times that of heterosexual couples” as Camenker claims.
Eliason: Domestic violence, what’s happening in that field dealing with this new lifestyle?
Camenker: Well it’s well known that the rates of domestic violence among homosexual couples is many, many times that of heterosexual couples for all kinds of reasons. What’s happened in Massachusetts is that it has gotten so high that the legislature is having to budget more and more money, millions of dollars now, toward dealing with this problem up from a hundred thousand dollars just a few years go.
Camenker: It’s interesting at homosexual related events, you know gay pride events and all this stuff, they’re handing out all this gay domestic violence, partner violence literature, which is funded by the state. Apparently this has become a big problem; it’s even being passed out at high school gay clubs and all of this stuff. You know, the dysfunctional nature of homosexual relationships, which nobody wants to talk about, is being manifest more and more we’re seeing.
A few weeks ago, Phyllis Schlafly showed up on the American Family Radio's "AFA Today" program to promote her new book "No Higher Power: Obama's War on Religious Freedom" where she made the claim that "every time [President Obama] quotes from the Declaration of Independence, he omits the word 'Creator.'"
Every time he recites the Declaration of Independence, he omits the word "Creator." Now we all know what's in the Declaration and it's very strange, you can't blame it on a slip of the tongue or blame it on the teleprompter because he does it all the time.
We have finally gotten so sick of hearing this lie that we put together this short video demonstrating multiple instances of President Obama quoting the "endowed by their Creator" line:
Schlafly's claims that Obama omits the word "Creator" every time he cites the Declaration is verifibly false, yet she keeps repeating it ... and you can't blame it on a slip of the tongue or on the teleprompter, because she does it all the time!
Phyllis Schlafly continued her book tour yesterday by speaking with Sandy Rios of the American Family Association, and accused Obama of “trying to wipe God out of our public life” and “wipe Christianity out of our public life.” She also suggested that Obama refuses to discuss his Christian faith, which is not true, and that his campaign is promoting a cult, “When he arrives his followers all stand around and chant ‘You’re the one we’ve been waiting for!’” Obama used the line “we are the ones we’ve been waiting for” in a speech, citing a poem by an anti-Apartheid activist. It was not a campaign chant as Schlafly insists, but the falsehoods didn’t end there:
Schlafly: This is so ominous, this is so un-American, you know we’ve had several years Sandy and I’m sure you’ve reported on them where the ACLU and the atheists have been litigating to get rid of crosses, standing to honor our veterans and the Ten Commandments, pictures and monuments, and he just fits right into that, that’s why when he arrives his followers all stand around and chant ‘You’re the one we’ve been waiting for!’ He fits right into that. There are just so many ways that he’s just trying to wipe God out of our public life.
Rios: I’d like to give another illustration, because when I was on radio in Chicago we played this clip over and over again, I don’t have the clip this morning but he has said repeatedly, this always stunned me too Phyllis when he’s made speeches on allegedly to religious freedom or illusions to that topic, he has said repeatedly ‘we are a nation of’ and he gives a whole list, ‘Buddhists and Muslims and non-believers,’ and he always puts Muslims and non-believers right at the top of the list. He emphasizes always non-believers and Christians are just one of a series that he lists. The inference of course is that we are not a Christian nation, we are nation of Buddhists and Muslims and non-believers. That’s what he has said repeatedly and that was a huge red flag to me a very long time ago.
Schlafly: That’s right and over in the Middle East he repeated, ‘we are not a Christian nation.’ While he is trying to wipe Christianity out of our public life, he is giving a pass to the Muslims. He never says anything criticizing that. He says they are a peaceful nation, well I don’t know when I see those pictures of the World Trade towers I don’t think they’re very peaceful.
Of course, Obama was not the first president to say we are not a Christian nation. In fact, the Treaty of Tripoli, which was crafted under George Washington and ratified by John Adams after it was approved unanimously by the Senate, reads: “the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen,” [Muslims]. And Obama is also not the first President to condemn the argument, made by Schlafly, that radical terrorist groups like Al Qaeda are representative of all of Islam.
As for Rios’ claim that Obama downplays America’s Christian community and “always puts Muslims and non-believers right at the top of the list” in his speeches, that is simply not the case. She is referring to a 2007 speech where Obama said: “Whatever we once were, we are no longer a Christian nation – at least, not just. We are also a Jewish nation, a Muslim nation, a Buddhist nation, and a Hindu nation, and a nation of nonbelievers.” Muslim is the third religion mentioned, and nonbelievers are mentioned last. Plus, there is nothing wrong with what Obama said. Indeed, America is not just made up of Christians, but is a nation that includes Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, among various other people of faith. That is simply a statement of fact.
WorldNetDaily’s Aaron Klein appaeared on the AFA Today to promote his new book, Fool Me Twice: Obama’s Shocking Plans for the Next Four Years Exposed. Klein told Buster Wilson, who gladly pushes any conspiracy theory he finds in his email inbox, that members of the Obama administration and supporters may try to find “a way to collapse the US capitalist system and rebuild it into a socialist, Marxist utopia.” He tried to claim that he’s “not arguing that” in his book, but made it clear what he really thinks, noting that Obama will be embracing a “Marxist agenda.” Klein made a similar argument last year when he said that progressives are deliberately trying to create “financial chaos.”
Klein: You have a combination of corruption, you have a combination of ideological beliefs, and maybe even there is something out there, I can understand the argument, that let’s say if you want to look at it from a sinister perspective there are progressives out there both in the government and outside, you can argue, who we know they’re anti-capitalist. In fact Obama has actually given an anti-capitalist speech now or two. So maybe it could be argued, again I’m not arguing this, that this is a way to collapse the US capitalist system and rebuild it into a socialist, Marxist utopia. I’m not arguing that but I can tell you that a lot of Obama’s second term strategy in Full Me Twice comes straight from actually a Marxist agenda: we’re talking living wage, we’re talking paycheck fairness, and other things that originated with Marxism and that continue until now but these plans have of course been updated.
Wilson: A lot of Marxist philosophy, an end result of Marxist ideology that comes through the process spelled out by Saul Alinsky as well.