Alliance Defending Freedom: It’s days away: The Supreme Court’s marriage decision is expected to come down on June 29.
Christian News Network: “Any community group can meet in New York City’s school buildings during non-school hours for any purpose— except for religious groups meeting to worship God. This policy is clearly nothing more than religious segregation–the kind of segregation the mayor has said he opposes,” said Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) Senior Counsel Jordan Lorence in a statement.
One News Now: “If the city uses this occasion to evict the churches, it will be harming only itself and the people who live in the neighborhoods,” says Alliance Defending Freedom senior counsel Jordan Lorence. “It will be throwing out the very groups that provide enormous and very needed help to the community, and even the schools themselves, as Mayor de Blasio has rightly acknowledged.”
The Washington Times (CNA): “Any community group can meet in New York City’s school buildings during non-school hours for any purpose – except for religious groups meeting to worship God,” Jordan Lorence, senior counsel with the legal group Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) stated in reaction to the decision. ADF had petitioned the Supreme Court to review the case
Time: The Republican contenders who weighed in sided with Pence, who party strategists say could still emerge as a White House contender himself. The cascade of support was a clear sign of the importance of the issue for the party’s social conservatives, who have increasingly rallied behind the cause as voters and the courts moved to legalize same-sex marriage in states around the country.
ADF Media: Many eyes are turning to New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio Monday as a result of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to leave in place an appeals court ruling that upheld a city ban on worship services in public school buildings during non-school hours.
Alliance Defending Freedom: We are saddened that the Supreme Court has decided not to hear the Bronx Household of Faith case. The court passed by an opportunity to defend religious freedom and to give churches access to facilities that allow them to freely worship and serve their communities. Now it’s up to Mayor Bill de Blasio to decide whether these churches will be evicted from the neighborhoods they serve.
Bloomberg: Jordan Lorence, a lawyer with the Washington-based Alliance Defending Freedom who represented the church, said before the court acted that the group will consider additional litigation. One factor will be “whether Mayor de Blasio honors his repeated promises to change the policy and to allow religious groups to continue meeting in the schools for worship services.”
Religion News Service: “This policy is clearly nothing more than religious segregation — the kind of segregation the mayor has said he opposes,” said Jordan Lorence, senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, which has represented Bronx Household of Faith in its legal battle against the city’s policy.
De Blasio will revamp rules against worship in school after U.S. Supreme Court rejects appeal from Bronx church
NY Daily News: “This is good news from the mayor’s office, but the policy banning worship services has to be changed,” said Jordan Lorence, a lawyer with Alliance Defending Freedom, which is handling the case for the Bronx church.
World Magazine: Ending 20 years of litigation, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday denied the Bronx Household of Faith case about the right of churches to have after-hours access to New York public schools like every other nonprofit. The court, which needs only four justices’ votes to hear a case, issued no comment with its denial.
Christianity Today: “Any community group can meet in New York City’s school buildings during non-school hours for any purpose—except for religious groups meeting to worship God. This policy is clearly nothing more than religious segregation—the kind of segregation the mayor has said he opposes,” said Jordan Lorence, senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, which has represented Bronx Household for 20 years in its legal battle against the city’s policy.
Baptist News: Lawyers for the Alliance Defending Freedom argued that excluding worship services from “a broadly available public forum” discriminates against religion. The church, which has outgrown its own building, needs more space for special occasions and the nearby public school is the only place large enough that they can afford.
Christian Daily: “Any community group can meet in New York City’s school buildings during non-school hours for any purpose – except for religious groups meeting to worship God. This policy is clearly nothing more than religious segregation – the kind of segregation the mayor has said he opposes,” said Jordan Lorence, senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, which has been representing Bronx Household of Faith.
National Law Journal (Access via Google): “If the city chooses to use this occasion to evict the churches, it will be shooting itself in the foot,” Jordan Lorence of Alliance Defending Freedom said in a statement. “It will be throwing out the very groups that provide enormous and very needed help to their communities and even the schools themselves, as Mayor de Blasio rightly has acknowledged.”
Politico: A rare bipartisan health care bill taking shape in the House poses a real gut check for Senate Democrats as to what they care about most.
Bloomberg View: Can New York City bar religious worship in its school buildings? This very basic question about the First Amendment has been hotly contested in the courts for years — and the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to announce Monday whether it will take the case.
Life News: Senate Democrats voted yet again today to block a bill to help victims of sex trafficking because it contains pro-life language to ensure that funds intended for women victimized by human trafficking are not used to pay for abortions. This time Democrats blocked passage of the bill to help women on a 57-41 vote.
The New York Times: Yet as the leader of a famously secular city, Mr. de Blasio has been emerging as something unexpected: a champion of religion whose administration has advanced the cause of faith groups in the unlikeliest of public squares.
The Weekly Standard: On Tuesday, 42 Senate Democrats prevented a vote on a bill to help the victims of sex trafficking because the bill does not provide federal funding for elective abortions.
Life News: “I’m pro-life. My position is consistent on that,” he said. “They’re taking an ad out there that talked about what the law did in the state which was endorsed by Wisconsin Right to Life, so it’s a pro-life law.”
BuzzFeed News: The United States government on Friday urged the Supreme Court to strike down state bans on same-sex couples’ marriages across the country, concluding, “There is no adequate justification for such a discriminatory and injurious exercise of state power.”
Public Discourse: After decades of efforts to be emancipated from religious influences, the toleration of political liberals is still only an impoverished relative of its classical cousin.
The Washington Post: In the brief, the signatories argue that they “have concluded that marriage is strengthened, and its value to society and to individual families and couples is promoted, by providing access to civil marriage for all American couples—heterosexual or gay or lesbian alike. In particular, civil marriage provides stability for the children of same-sex couples, the value of which cannot be overestimated. In light of these conclusions, amici believe that the Fourteenth Amendment prohibits States from denying same-sex couples the legal rights and responsibilities that flow from the institution of civil marriage.”
Public Discourse: When running for the presidency in 2008, Barack Obama misled the voters about his true position on the question of same-sex marriage. This is not an accusation made by one of the president’s political enemies, but an admission made by one of his closest political advisors: David Axelrod.
Crossmap (Christian Telegraph): The new U.S. religious freedom ambassador wasted no time emphasizing the urgency of his mission as he was sworn in on Feb. 20, reports Catholic News Agency.
Life News: The Senate Judiciary Committee has approved the nomination of pro-abortion Loretta Lynch as the next Attorney General, replacing pro-abortion Eric Holder in that top spot in the Obama administration. Lynch’s nomination now heads to the full Senate.
Desert Dispatch: For the last several years, the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) has led the campaign to challenge the ban on clergy influencing legislation or favoring or opposing candidates.
Christian Today: Evangelical Christians are far more politically engaged than the rest of the population, but share the general lack of trust in politicians, according to a new study by the Evangelical Alliance (EA).
Christian Today: Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown will become the country’s first openly bisexual mayor when she is sworn in on Wednesday.
The Washington Post: Everyone wants to know whether Jeb Bush can survive his support for Common Core and comprehensive immigration reform in today’s Republican Party. One deal-breaker that might surprise people, though: His opposition to same-sex marriage.
The Daily Signal: Fifty-one years ago, President Lyndon B. Johnson launched the War on Poverty. Since then, taxpayers have spent more than $22 trillion fighting Johnson’s war, three times the cost of all military wars in U.S. history.
Aleteia: It’s so bad, he says, that the United States has made clear it will not help Nigeria fight the Boko Haram terror group unless the countrymodify its laws regarding homosexuality, family planning and birth-control.
Religion News Service: A survey of 1,500 adults released Thursday (Feb. 12) by YouGov, a British market research firm, shows that as many as a third of all Britons do not believe in God or any kind of higher power.
Planned Parenthood appeals Bobby Jindal administration’s rejection of abortion services in New Orleans
NOLA: Planned Parenthood is appealing a decision by Gov. Bobby Jindal’s administration to deny its application to provide abortions at a new clinic under construction in New Orleans.
Christianity Today: It’s not news that politics can be dreary and dysfunctional. For this reason, as we begin another long season of presidential election politics, many Christians are running for cover, eager to avoid politics as much as possible. The reasons for withdrawal have become predictable. Some suggest politics is too broken, too corrupt, for Christians get involved in without sacrificing faithfulness. Others claim politics is a distraction from more spiritual pursuits. These are both long-held, persistent ideas, each with their own merits, but they are ultimately incomplete.
Gallup: Americans who say they are dissatisfied with current abortion policies were asked a follow-up question to learn if they are dissatisfied because they want current abortion laws to be stricter or less strict. This year, of those who are dissatisfied, twice as many prefer stricter rather than less strict laws: 24% want stricter laws, while 12% want current abortion laws to be less strict.
The Wall Street Journal (Access via Google): Thomas Jefferson wouldn’t make it as a Sunday school teacher in a Baptist church. We don’t tend to recruit those who would cut apart a Bible to get rid of miracles and resurrections—for us the best parts—to instruct our children. Yet the same Baptists and other evangelicals who wouldn’t have let Jefferson near their baptismal pools were willing to check his name for president of the United States because he was willing to stand up for religious freedom.
National Review: It is extraordinarily disappointing to see Representative Renee Ellmers slamming pro-life groups as “childish” for insisting on a rape-reporting requirement in the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. Both the reporting requirement itself and the angry response to the House’s failure to bring the measure to a vote — handing abortionists a victory on the very day of the March for Life — were reasonable, defensible, and right.
The New York Times: Lawyers on average are much more liberal than the general population, a new study has found. But judges are more conservative than the average lawyer, to say nothing of the graduates of top law schools.
National Review: As the nation marked the 42nd anniversary of Roe v. Wade this month, polls show the country is more pro-life than ever. A Gallup poll finds that even among Democratic voters, about a third are “pro-life.” But in Congress, the party that celebrates “diversity” and “tolerance” is more monolithic than ever. According to Democrats for Life, the number of pro-life Democrats with voting privileges in Congress can now be counted on the fingers of one hand.
The Weekly Standard: Harry Reid has long insisted that he’s “pro-life” on the issue of abortion, but on Wednesday his Senate Majority PAC sent out a fundraising email calling legislation to ban most abortions during the final four months of pregnancy “our WORST NIGHTMARE”.
USA Today: Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, once an anti-abortion advocate, announced in a Wednesday op-ed that his views have shifted over a 14-year political career and he now supports abortion rights for women.
The Stream: As thousands descended on Washington last week for the annual “March for Life,” the Republican House of Representatives was busy watering down an anti-abortion bill that restricted abortions after 20 weeks, except in cases of rape or incest, with exemptions allowed only after a police report had been filed. This after a small group of moderate Republican female lawmakers challenged the bill and lobbied for a less restrictive measure.
The Wall Street Journal (access via Google): President Barack Obama expressed hope that the Supreme Court would affirm a nationwide right to same-sex marriage, in an interview that aired on YouTube Thursday afternoon.
Christian News Network: Barack Obama reaffirmed his “deep commitment” to abortion on Thursday despite the throng of thousands that gathered in the nation’s capital for the annual March for Life marking the 42nd “anniversary” of the Supreme Court ruling of Roe v. Wade.
National Review: Last week I suggested that Republicans are suffering from excessive angst about the political costs of opposing same-sex marriage. In the absence of a Supreme Court decision requiring all states to recognize same-sex marriages, conservative candidates for federal office in 2016 should say that they oppose it, why they oppose it, that they understand that many people of good will disagree, and that they have no intention (or power) to stand in the way of states that chose to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Aleteia: It wasn’t the first time a Pope has sent a tweet across the Atlantic to the annual March for Life, but Pope Francis’ Twitter message was welcomed with as much enthusiasm as the first papal tweet to the gathering was, a few years ago.
Christian leaders Matt Chandler, Russell Moore fed up with GOP decision to hold off on mid-term abortion ban
The Christian Post: Church and ministry leaders join forces with conservative political groups the morning of the 42nd annual March for Life to publicly rebuke House Republicans for its last-minute decision to delay the vote on a bill to ban abortion after 20 weeks. Church leaders, unlike policy groups, are seemingly not appeased by GOP’s decision to switch support to another pro-life bill that would ensure taxpayer dollars aren’t going to abortion providers under health insurance plans offered on the federal exchange.
The Daily Signal: The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act bans abortions after 20 weeks, except in cases where rape or incest had been reported to authorities.
Breitbart: As hundreds of thousands of members of the pro-life community descend upon Washington D.C. for the March for Life Thursday, the Republican leadership in the House of Representatives has caved to Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC) and a group of GOP women who believe passage of a bill that would ban abortions past the fifth month of pregnancy would hurt the Party’s chances with women and millennials.
Life News: The House today approved legislation that will put in place a complete ban on taxpayer funding of abortions that ensures abortions are not directly funded in any federal governmental program or department.
Aleteia: An analysis of the current United States Senate reveals that, of senators who attended Catholic colleges and universities, most have either voted or taken a public position in support of abortion rights, despite unchanging Catholic teaching on the dignity of human life beginning at conception.
The Washington Post: House Republican leaders abruptly dropped plans late Wednesday to vote on an anti-abortion bill amid a revolt by female GOP lawmakers concerned that the legislation’s restrictive language would once again spoil the party’s chances of broadening its appeal to women and younger voters.
The Federalist: Today marks the 42nd anniversary of the Supreme Court legalizing abortion on demand throughout pregnancy. The pro-life movement commemorates this day with marches, worship services and lobbying for bills to protect unborn children. Pro-lifers were promised by the Republican leaders they just helped elect and re-elect that the House of Representatives would pass a bill today banning most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, a point after which infants can feel pain and survive if born prematurely.
National Review: President Obama’s “middle class economics,” a major theme in last night’s State of the Union speech, aimed to be family friendly, most especially through paid family leave. Specifically, the president has urged that the government provide six weeks of paid leave for federal workers needing to care for a sick family member or a new child, and he wants to put additional funds into encouraging states to do something similar.
Politico: House Republican leadership is planning to move forward with a bill banning abortions after 20 weeks, despite opposition from female lawmakers who fear the legislation is too harsh and could turn off young voters.
Family Studies: Earlier this month, the New York Times’ David Leonhardt published a brief letterarguing that increasing economic inequality is both a cause and an effect of changing family structures. He suggested that this is one area where conservatives, who emphasize the causal impact of family structure on economic factors, have a greater claim to the evidence than liberals. We asked a few scholars to weigh in on the significance of his piece. Their responses are below.
Christian News Network: The Obama administration has expressed its opposition to a Congressional bill that would ban abortions after five months gestation, opining that it is an “assault on a woman’s right to choose.”
The Christian Post: Clinton was the first president to mention “gay” during his State of the Union address in 2000, according to the LGBT publication The Washington Blade. And in 1999, the former president used the term “sexual orientation” while talking about hate crimes legislation and the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.
News Wise: Baylor University announced today that former U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf, who represented Virginia’s 10th District in Congress from 1981 until his retirement on Jan. 3, has been named the Jerry and Susan Wilson Chair in Religious Freedom.
National Review: House Republicans didn’t talk much yesterday about the strategy to fight President Obama’s immigration actions over the next several weeks, but they are debating the politics of pro-life legislation, especially a bill that would ban the abortions of in utero infants capable of feeling pain.
The Daily Signal: A group of South Asia experts recently submitted a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry urging him to address rising religious persecution in Pakistan during his trip to the region for the U.S.–Pakistan Strategic Dialogue this week.
The Economist: A broad and ideologically mixed array of Washingtonian south Asia wonks, including ones who don’t normally pay much attention to things spiritual, urged John Kerry in an open letter to put religious freedom much higher on the agenda.
The Washington Times (AP): The Supreme Court won’t hear a challenge to part of Vermont’s campaign finance laws that impose contribution limits on political action committees.
Politico: Sen. Marco Rubio is sharply criticizing court rulings paving the way for same-sex marriage in his home state of Florida.
The Daily Signal: Florida Republicans Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio – both potential presidential candidates – offered their reaction to their state’s recent decision to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, after a federal district judge ruled that it was unconstitutional for county clerks to deny marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Public Discourse: With his intelligence and his oratorical gifts, Mario Cuomo could have been the true champion of the little guy—the littlest of all—if he had kept the Democratic Party from becoming captive to the abortion interest.
The Week: The essence of Cuomo’s argument was that abortion rights and religious rights spring from the same principles. You can’t protect one without defending the other.
Congressman Chris Smith Press Release: Congressman Chris Smith (NJ-04) and over 75 Members of Congress have filed a comment letter with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) opposing the abortion aspects of the proposed rule on “HHS Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters for 2016” for the Obamacare marketplace.
The Hill: These religious freedoms, which Americans have enjoyed for more than 220 years, were ultimately upheld this year by the Supreme Court, when it reaffirmed that no one in this country should be forced to choose between giving up their business for their faith and giving up their faith for their business.
Fox News: Americans for Prosperity, a prominent conservative group, is suing the California attorney general for allegedly demanding donor information and threatening harsh penalties if they don’t comply.
Public Discourse: Instead of simply reacting to modern liberalism’s advances, it’s time for conservatives to consider what their own fundamental transformation of America would look like.
The Washington Post: According to pundits, the Democratic Party overplayed the “war on women” narrative in the 2014 midterm election, and this helped the GOP win key Senate and gubernatorial races, including in states carried easily by Obama in 2012. In that election, the birth control mandate in the Affordable Care Act — a crucial aspect of the war on women rhetoric — was hotly debated.