Week Ending June 13, 2003
Religious Freedom Coalition
June 13, 2003 4:24PM EST
CONGRESS IN SESSION
CONGRESS IN SESSION
MAJOR RFC EVENT ON THE 4th OF JULY
The Religious Freedom Coalition is a grand patron sponsor this year for the 32nd Annual National Conservative Fourth of July Soiree. If you can attend, please come to this year's traditional picnic to be held at Bull Run Regional Park in Centreville, Virginia on July 4th from noon until 5:00 PM. Join other conservative families for fellowship and patriotic speeches by conservative leaders. There will be a Dixieland band and a clown for the kids. Bring your favorite covered dish--roast pig and soft drinks will be provided free. If you're interested, please e-mail email@example.com for more information.
UNDER GOD and THE PLEDGE
There is a continuing problem in Chairman Sensenbrenner's House Judiciary Committee with the Pledge Protection Act of 2003. Despite thousands of e-mail's to the Chairman, the staff refuse to even admit the bill offered by Congressman Todd Akin (R-MO) exists. When one individual called the committee office he was told that no one there was aware of the bill. This is odd, considering that 216 congressmen have co-sponsored the bill to protect "under God" in the Pledge to the Flag. This week Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL) signed as a co-sponsor. This is only the 4th bill he has co-sponsored since becoming Speaker of the House. Please take the time to call the staff of the Judiciary Committee at (202) 225-3951 and tell them how you feel about protecting "under God" in the Pledge. I urge you to call, since phone calls and letters have more effect than e-mail's; however, please continue to send your e-mail comments on HR- 2028, the Pledge Protection Act, to Chairman Sensenbrenner. Click here to send your comments.
CHILDREN'S HOPE ACT
Congressman Trent Franks (R-AZ) is an old friend of mine from Arizona. My political action committee backed his election to Congress. In this, his freshman year, he is introducing worthwhile legislation. Congressman Franks has introduced the Children's Hope Act of 2003 which is very similar to a bill he authored as a state legislator. The bill gives tax incentives to individuals who contribute money to scholarship funds which help low income families send their children to private and Christian schools. An individual would receive an actual tax credit of up to $100 ($200 joint return) for contributing that amount to a scholarship fund. Since a similar law was passed in Arizona, 57,000 children have benefited from $56 million in scholarships.
The bill has 21 original co-sponsors but needs more if we are going to see some action on it. This is a valuable bill that can help tens of thousands of children get out of poorly performing schools in the inner city and into private schools. Please call you congressman and ask him to cosponsor this legislation.
PARTIAL BIRTH ABORTION
Both the House and the Senate have now passed versions of the Partial Birth Abortion Ban (PBA) As soon as minor differences are reconciled in the Conference Committee, the PBA will be sent to President George W. Bush for signing. He has stated in the past that he will sign the bill. I and other conservative leaders in Washington have signed a joint letter to the President urging him to sign the bill at a South Lawn ceremony so that thousands of pro-life supporters will be able to attend. I have been at bill signings within the White House, and only a handful of us could actually watch the President sign a bill. The PBA is such a huge pro-life victory that it should be made into more of a celebration than a mere signing ceremony. Please e-mail President Bush or call the White House opinion line at 202-456-1111 asking him to help make this great victory a very public and very large occasion.
There have been a few pro-life leaders who have called the PBA ban a hollow victory. In public statements and letters to the editor they have said that abortionists will just find other ways to kill babies. I disagree with their criticism for several reasons. First the partial birth abortion procedure is too gruesome to describe and no human being should have his life ended this way. Secondly the very public PBA fight has helped to move public opinion in our direction. When the fight began during the Clinton Administration almost ten years ago only 33% of Americans referred to themselves as pro-life. That figure now stands at 46% with an overwhelming majority of Americans now saying they are "personally" against abortion. (See poll) The PBA fight has helped us move America further to the pro-life side and every minute and dollar spent on the PBA ban was worth it.
From last week: The Religious Freedom Coalition is now working on the passage of the Unborn Victims of Violence Act (UVVA). President George W. Bush has indicated he would sign this much needed legislation into law as well. When passed, the Unborn Victims of Violence Act (also known as the Laci and Conner Peterson Act) would punish those who cause harm to a child still in the womb. Thus if a pregnant woman is murdered, the perpetrator of the murder would be charged not with one count, but with two counts of murder. Majority Leader Roy Blunt has promised a vote on UVVA before the July 4th break.
Senate Democrats have begun a filibuster on the judicial nomination of Alabama Attorney General Bill Pryor. This brings to four the number of Democrat filibusters being conducted against judicial nominees. All four of the blocked nominees are pro-life, three are minorities, and three are Catholic. In a related development the diocese of Sioux Falls, South Dakota has issued a letter to Senator Daschle (D-SD), the Minority Leader of the Senate, forbidding him from referring to himself as a Catholic because of his radical pro-abortion stance. (More about letter)
Over the past few weeks many social conservative leaders including myself have been very vocal in our criticism of the Administration being too cozy with the homosexual lobby in Washington, DC. In particular I have complained about former RNC chairman Racicot's calling all of us social conservatives ignorant for not supporting the homosexual lifestyle. I have also been very critical of the special White House conferences given to homosexual groups including the Log Cabin Republicans and the Human Rights Campaign.
During the Clinton Administration, June was always declared "Gay Pride" month and numerous celebrations of "gay pride" were paid for by taxpayers. Huge halls were hired and many times straight employees of government agencies were forced to attend these celebrations of sodomy. The first year of the Bush Administration this abomination continued, even in John Ashcroft's Justice Department, just because of "tradition."
The Washington Times in an article dated June 13th stated that social conservative criticism of the Bush Administration becoming too supportive of the gay agenda has paid off. President George W. Bush has refused to sign a declaration making June "Gay Pride Month." Attorney General Ashcroft has informed the organizers of the June 20th "gay pride" event at the Justice Department that they will have to pay for the event themselves, and that no taxpayer money will be used. In addition, the FBI has canceled an invitation to Human Rights Campaign (HRC) director Elizabeth Birch. The HRC is a homosexual advocacy group. The Commerce Department has also stopped official sponsorship of the Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Employees (GLOBE) activities. By the way, GLOBE has fewer than 100 members in the department, yet expected the taxpayers to support their celebration of sodomy.
I congratulate the Bush Administration! Taxpayers should not foot the bill for special interest groups such as homosexuals to "celebrate" their sex acts. Sex is a private matter and the Federal Government should not be sponsoring various groups to promote how they have sex. Is there a "Straight Pride Month?" Enough said.
I regret to tell you that we still have not received a shipment of our new video documentary, Holy Land Settlements, about the Jewish settlements in Samaria and Judea, which was mentioned in several previous updates However, we can accept orders only with the understanding that the video will not be shipped until the last week of June. Click here for more information.
The current situation in the Holy Land may change our plans for visits this summer. I had planned on taking several congressmen to Jewish settlements in the "West Bank" including Ariel, and to visit Christian schools on the West Bank as well. The terrorist group HAMAS has declared open war on Israeli civilians and told all foreign visitors that they are targets as well. I will update you on the status of our trips to the Holy Land next week.
Check our Internet site at www.rfcnet.org for last minute updates! God richly bless you, that is my prayer.
William J. Murray, Chairman
Religious Freedom Coalition, Washington, DC
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