Chad Connelly, the Republican National Committee’s official in charge of reaching out to evangelical voters, told a breakout session at the far-right Awakening conference on Saturday that conservative pastors must get involved in politics because LGBT activists are “coming for the church.”
When an audience member in a session about abortion rights asked what to do about a pastor who refuses to participate in politics, Connelly responded that “voting is not political, it’s spiritual” and urged pastors to violate rarely-enforced regulations that prevent churches from being involved in partisan politics in order to keep their tax-exempt status.
Referring to cases where businesses have run afoul of nondiscrimination laws by refusing service to gay and lesbian couples, Connelly said, “Who would have thought that a florist or a baker or a photographer or, for goodness sakes, a wedding chapel would be sued when there were competitors that they could have gone to? They’re coming for the church.”
Listen, voter registration is not political, it’s spiritual. Voting is not political, it’s spiritual. So witness and testimony to the community what you believe in. No wonder we get legislation we don’t agree with, no wonder we get candidates and elected officials we don’t agree with, because our people aren’t engaged.
So if your pastor’s saying, ‘It’s a legal issue, I can’t do this,’ ask them how many churches have lost their tax-exempt status. It’s a finite number: zero. By definition, you’re tax exempt. If there’s no freedom of speech in the pulpit, there’s no freedom of speech, brothers and sisters. And if we can’t say the truth from the pulpit, guess what, we can’t say the truth anywhere.
Who would have thought that a florist or a baker or a photographer or, for goodness sakes, a wedding chapel would be sued when there were competitors that they could have gone to. They’re coming for the church.
He ended by asking the audience to “please help us pressure your pastors” to get involved in elections, but adding that “it’s not a party or political issue.”
Later in the same discussion, far-right pastor Rick Scarborough warned that “every pastor is going to be directly assaulted” by the Supreme Court’s upcoming ruling on marriage equality, claiming that a pro-equality ruling would force churches to “participate in same-sex marriage” or face fines or imprisonment.
Sandy Rios, the right-wing radio host and American Family Association governmental affairs director, is outraged at the GOP’s handling of legislation to combat sex trafficking, a bipartisan bill whose passage may be threatened because of an anti-abortion provision quietly added in by Republican leadership.
Rios said her problem isn’t with the anti-choice add-on, which she supports, but with the fact that Republicans are pushing for the legislation at all at a time when they should instead be fighting to stop gay rights.
She claimed that conservatives should see the fight against sex trafficking as “secondary” to combatting homosexuality since the latter is “threatening the culture” while trafficking “has been overblown.”
This is where misguided people are really affecting the system in a bad way. And this is going to be very controversial what I’m about to say, but I’m going to say it. This whole business of sexual trafficking in the United States, I’m not saying it’s not something of note, I’m not saying it’s something I approve of, but I suspect, methinks, it has been overblown, methinks this is much like the homeless issue that was absolutely blown completely out of proportion by the press and by others many years ago. I think there may be some problem because we have such massive immigration from countries that actually practice this. I doubt it is the huge, huge, huge, huge, huge issue that people want you to think it is.
This is the thing that bothers me: I see ministries and churches jumping on the bandwagon, they are all about saving the women who have been sexually trafficked, this is their great sacrifice, this is their great stand on social issues, at the same time will not say a word, not a peep, about homosexual marriage, hardly anything about homosexuality and what God says about it because that, you see, would cost something. But sexual trafficking, you see, ‘we’re outraged about that,’ not so much about gay marriage because that might be a little icky, we might offend people in the congregation. But sexual trafficking, that’s huge.
So John Cornyn from Texas, Mitch McConnell, they’re hearing from evangelicals who are into sexual trafficking, such a controversial issue, it raises a lot of money and nobody disagrees, it’s a safe issue. By the way, I’m not saying don’t help women who are sexually trafficked or little boys, whoever, but I’m saying it is the coward’s embrace, that’s my opinion. It is the secondary issue of our day, it’s not the one that is threatening the culture.
They think they are pleasing — this is their bone to evangelicals, this is their bone to Christians, we’re passing this victims of trafficking act and we’re saving lives while doing it, this provision that prevents money from going to women who are trafficked for having abortions, I’m not opposed to that, I’m in favor of that. But it is not the issue of the day, it is the coward’s issue of the day to sort of act like you’re doing something when you’re really doing nothing. So Mitch McConnell is not going to call Loretta Lynch’s vote if those Democrats don’t allow this bill to go through with a provision to prevent abortions, so that is how they are pretending as though they have chests when indeed they have none.
Kevin Swanson is deeply disturbed by the “homosexual theme” and “homosexual connection” found in the Taylor Swift song “Welcome to New York.”
“That’s the way it goes as another nice little Presbyterian, Southern Baptist girl bites the dust, following the trajectory of Miley Cyrus, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, taking their 13-year-old fan club all the way,” the Religious Right broadcaster lamented on his radio program yesterday.
He added that parents should make sure that their children aren’t listening to musicians like Taylor Swift.
“They’re all riding the train and they start out with a benign Taylor Swift, Katy Perry and Miley Cyrus and before you know it they’re singing their demon songs and they’re making their attributions to their homosexual friends and that’s the way a national apostasy occurs,” Swanson warned.
Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., stopped by the Family Research Council radio program “Washington Watch” yesterday to discuss the Israeli election with FRC President Tony Perkins. Franks, despite once criticizing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government for approving public funding to cover abortions, all but endorsed Netanyahu’s campaign, telling Perkins that “all future generations will suffer” if he does not remain prime minister.
After Perkins told Franks that “we need to be praying” that Netanyahu retains his post as prime minister, the congressman worried that uninformed, naive voters would back Netanyahu’s opponents, just like American voters who supported President Obama.
“Keep in mind that I suppose a lot of us never would have believed that this country would have elected Barack Obama,” Franks said. “I have said that Barack Obama is not the real problem, it’s the amalgamation of the totally uninformed or totally self-focused that would elect such a man to be president, and for us to do it twice shocked the world. Keep it mind there are some of those same dangerous naivetés in Israel too and they may elect a leader that does not understand the danger of a nuclear Iran the way Bibi Netanyahu does and this is a big deal and, as you say, we better pray.”
Perkins stated that Israel may not survive an electoral defeat of Netanyahu and pushed discredited claims that the Obama administration is directly funding the prime minister’s opponents, leading Franks to warn that “if Bibi Netanyahu loses and it turns out that this president had any part in it, it’s another unprecedented moment in history where all future generations will suffer to some extent because of it.”
Franks said that he is incensed that “this president continues to insult [Israel] over and over again,” adding that he believes Obama’s presidency is a danger to the world.
“I want to you to know, I a long time ago had to let go of my personal feelings towards a president that would so casually dismiss the truth and the Constitution, but now I am starting to be afraid for my country with this man at the helm because I’m concerned that this kind of duplicity and this kind of arrogance is dangerous for this country and my children’s future,” he said.
Fischer, who has long favored the criminalization of homosexuality, hailed the move, declaring that this is the "good kind" of discrimination that should underlie all of our public policy while laughably asserting that this sort of discrimination does not target people, but simply behavior.
"Discrimination against sexually immoral behavior is good," he said. "I'm not talking about discrimination against people here, not even talking about discrimination against people based on their sexual orientation. It's based on their behavior. We discriminate against sexually immoral behavior, not against the person because unless they act out on it, unless they do something, unless the commit an immoral act they're not properly the subject of these kind of policies. But if they engage in that kind of behavior, then it's appropriate that be a subject or a matter for discrimination of the good kind":
Yesterday on “Washington Watch,” Family Research Council President Tony Perkins spoke to a caller who insisted that President Obama is a secret Muslim, claiming that the president drinks alcohol because he has a “special dispensation” that allows him to hide his Islamic faith.
Perkins said that such a theory “makes sense” because the president is “overly deferential to Islam and almost hostile to Christianity.” He quickly added that he doesn’t know what Obama really believes, but insists that it is “very clear to see” that Obama favors Islam over Christianity and comes from a Muslim background.
Religious Right political strategist David Lane, who urges greater political engagement by conservative evangelical pastors and promotes right-wing candidates, has managed a pretty neat trick: he trashes “establishment” Republicans while taking RNC members on junkets to Israel and being embraced by top RNC officials, including GOP Chairman Reince Priebus and Director of Faith Engagement Chad Connelly. Lane is out today with another slam at Republicans who support legal equality for LGBT Americans – a category that does not, to be clear, include Priebus and Connelly.
What has Lane so agitated is the amicus brief that was signed by 300 Republicans urging the U.S. Supreme Court to rule in favor of marriage equality nationwide. Lane, to put it mildly, is not pleased. Lane quotes 18th Century English theologian William Berriman:
"It is the property of the Devil, not to mistake the nature of virtue, and esteem it criminal, but to hate it for this reason, because it is good, and therefore most opposite to his designs. The wicked, as his proper emissaries, resemble him in this, and grieve to have the foulness of their vices made conspicuous by being placed near the light of virtuous example."
And then, just so we don’t miss the point, Lane writes:
These GOP Chieftains and Lieutenants lack wisdom. They are neither "shrewd," "insightful," nor "wise"-but "weak-willed" and "easily seduced." They do not believe in the truth that "The true glory of a nation lies in its righteousness rather than its wealth or power."
…These leaders have served as key cogs of the Republican Party apparatus for a quarter of a century. Defining themselves as "conservative" camouflages their radical, secular ideology. They are responsible for frittering away the branding and legacy of limited government, lower taxes, deregulation of business and a philosophy of-"the-one-thing-government-can-do-for-me-is-leave-me-alone"-bequeathed to the Republican Party by Ronald Reagan in the 1980s.
Lane singles out former RNC Chair and White House Political Director Ken Mehlman for calling marriage equality “the conservative position.” Says Lane, “What Mehlman is trying to pull here is unconscionable-without principle.”
As we have noted before, Lane views himself both as a warrior for the Republican Party – turning out evenglical voters to support right-wing candidates, and a warrior within the GOP against those who do not share his Christian-nation, anti-gay extremism (or his religion). More from his latest salvo:
This trend of redefining words has only just begun. Phony Republican leaders will continue to use the word "conservative," but with two different meanings. Therefore, if we mean to appreciate conservative values, defend them, and even judge them any better than the Democrat Party's penchant for abortion, homosexual marriage, and anti-god values, then we must define the basic values of the Grand Old Party.
Evangelical and Pro-Life Catholic Christians will find little "community" with Republican secularists, as these agnostics attempt to impose a godless paganism on the nation. After all, what is a political party if not a group of individuals supporting certain beliefs?
Lane says “secular Republicans who impose so-called homosexual marriage on the nation in 2015 will have the exact same effect on the Republican Party that slavery had on the Whig Party in 1852-it will collapse.”
Lane is a Christian nationalist who says America was founded for “the glory of God and the advancement of the Christian faith” and demands that the Bible be made a primary textbook in public schools. He has blamed Supreme Court decisions upholding church-state separation for imposing a “pagan” secularism on the nation. He returns to that theme in today’s screed:
The Founders established the Bible as the fixed point in order to judge, therein establishing the unity, structure, and shape that welded a people together in a single terrain and fashioned American Exceptionalism. In 1963, the shortsighted Supreme Court eliminated the Bible from public schools causing lone dissenting Justice Potter Stewart to prophesy, "...[the decision] led not to true neutrality with respect to religion, but to the establishment of a religion of secularism." This atrocity has finally reached its denouement in America. One worldview is going to reign supreme between these two competing ideologies: godless secularism or biblical Christianity. One philosophy leads on to fortune, the other "over the falls of Niagara."
In a radio interview this weekend, Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver called on states to defy a Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality if it goes “the wrong way.”
“What we could have is the Supreme Court issuing its decision on marriage the wrong way, and Alabama saying, ‘Goodbye, get out of my state, that’s not what’s going to happen to my state,’” Staver told anti-LGBT pundit Linda Harvey, adding that he hopes Texas will also flout such a decision.
The Religious Right legal activist went on to insist that California’s Proposition 8, the gay marriage ban that was struck down by the federal courts, “still is applicable” in most of the state. “They have no legal authority to issue those same-sex marriage licenses,” he claimed.
Staver said that people should prepare to commit civil disobedience if same-sex marriage becomes legal, pointing to the example of a North Carolina magistrate who is refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples and offering an extremely twisted account of a controversy involving Catholic Charities in Massachusetts.
“Go back to the days of Martin Luther King Jr., go back to the days of the American Revolution,” Staver said. “I think it’s that serious.”
Although WorldNetDaily frequently reminds its readers that the earth is just 6,000 years old, the far-right outlet reports today that an event which “only takes place once every 100,000 years” is “an unmistakable sign of judgment.”
According to WND, “biblical experts” are excited that a solar eclipse on Friday “will darken the sun just in time for the sunrise at the North Pole,” which obviously means that God is about to punish Europe, and possibly the U.S., for its allegedly poor treatment of Israel and growing “anti-Israel sentiment.”
A solar eclipse coming on March 20 won’t just be an astronomical wonder – it will be an event that may be unprecedented in human history, according to biblical experts who say it is an unmistakable sign of judgment.
Such an astronomical event only takes place once every 100,000 years, experts said.
In an exclusive interview with WND, Root Source co-founder Bob O’Dell pointed to the significance of an eclipse visible from the North Pole at this particular time.
“The North Pole can’t really be called the territory of any particular nation or people,” O’Dell said. “This is likely a message from God to the entire world.”
Pastor Mark Biltz, author of “Blood Moons: Decoding the Imminent Heavenly Signs,” sees a heavenly warning in the consequences of the eclipse, especially for the northern Europeans, who will be most affected.
In an exclusive interview with WND, Biltz explained, “In Jewish tradition, a total solar eclipse is a warning to the Gentiles and a sign of judgment on the nations. When we look at where the darkness will be, it will be in northern European countries like England and Sweden where we see the rise of Islam and anti-Israel sentiment. Europeans especially should take heed.”
“This comes at a time when American aid for Israel has become an important political issue in the United States. But Israelis know they cannot put their survival in the hands of one who wishes their demise.
“All throughout history, Israel has put their hopes in foreign help rather than trusting in the God of Israel. From King Ahaz to King Zedekiah and throughout history. While the U.S. needs to back Israel, Israel needs to rely on the God of Israel.”
Biltz also points to other upcoming signs that will take place on feast days. There will be another solar eclipse on The Feast of Trumpets, on Sept. 13, 2015.
The final blood moon, a “super blood moon,” will appear during the Festival of Tabernacles, which is also known as a period of judgment for all the nations. Biltz believes that this is a sign that momentous events are in motion.