Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Obama Supports Religious-Exemption From Job Discrimination Laws?

He giveth with one hand (against CA's Proposition 8) and taketh away with the other.

Reaching out to evangelical voters, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama is announcing plans to expand President Bush's program steering federal social service dollars to religious groups and — in a move sure to cause controversy — support some ability to hire and fire based on faith.

Obama was unveiling his approach to getting religious charities more involved in government anti-poverty programs during a tour and remarks Tuesday in Zanesville, Ohio, at Eastside Community Ministry, which provides food, clothes, youth ministry and other services.


The Democratic presidential candidate spent Monday talking about his vision of patriotism in the battleground state of Missouri. By twinning that with Tuesday's talk about faith in another battleground state, he was attempting to settle debate in two key areas where his beliefs have come under question while also trying to make inroads with constituencies traditionally loyal to Republicans.

But Obama's support for letting religious charities that receive federal funding consider religion in employment decisions could invite a storm of protest from those who view such faith requirements as discrimination.

Obama does not support requiring religious tests for recipients of aid nor using federal money to proselytize, according to a campaign fact sheet. He also only supports letting religious institutions hire and fire based on faith in the non-taxypayer funded portions of their activities, said a senior adviser to the campaign, who spoke on condition of anonymity to more freely describe the new policy.

Bush supports broader freedoms for taxpayer-funded religious charities. But he never got Congress to go along so he has conducted the program through administrative actions and executive orders.
Should I put a stop payment on that $10 donation check I sent last week?


Mark H said...

I was too shocked to absorb this all this morning...and got mad so gardening wasn't even fun. I'm SO disappointed, and nervous now about what else he and Hillary really DO have in mind. We've been SO SO busy, just now catching up on some reading, Thanks, Gavin. Hope all's well.

Anonymous said...