Rep. Steve King Gives Religious Freedom the Royal Treatment
There may not be a shortage of religious liberty threats, but there is a shortage of religious liberty solutions. The GOP is doing its best to remedy that, most recently with a special subcommittee hearing on the topic. John Adams once said, “[N]othing is more dreaded than the national government meddling with religion.” And, as Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) followed up, most Americans understand that dread all too well. “The policies and regulation implemented under the previous administration were in many cases hostile to the religious protections afforded by our Constitution. Fortunately,” he went on, “several of these policies were struck down by the Supreme Court.”
But, as most of us have learned the hard way, the courts aren’t exactly a reliable conservative — or constitutional — alternative. The real change needs to start in Congress. No one understands that more than FRC friend and Constitution Subcommittee Chair Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa). In what will hopefully spur the president to act, House members talked in depth about the war on against religious liberty — from floral shops and social service charities and everything in between. In comments that FRC submitted to the hearing, we reminded members that:
Religious freedom is not merely an American right, although it is foundational to the very existence of the United States. It is a fundamental, inherent human right that inheres to all human beings, of all faiths, everywhere around the world, simply because they bear the image of God. Americans understand this whether it involves protecting the conscience of those opposed to fighting in wars, the right of pro-life doctors and health care professionals who object to performing abortions, or the myriad other ways our individual consciences might be compromised by government directives. These rights must always be vigilantly protected and guarded against ever-present encroachment… Penalizing people for what they believe should be unacceptable in any civilized democracy founded on principles of pluralism and is certainly unacceptable to Americans.
We thank Rep. King and our other friends in the Republican majority for continuing to raise the awareness of the assaults on religious freedom and doing everything they can to turn the page on the devastating legacy of the Obama administration. Together, we can work to protect people of faith from the heavy hand of government.
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