Within 15 minutes it was done: The Oklahoma Senate Judiciary Committee voted to pass three extreme bills yesterday – with no debate. The first bill would allow prayer in public schools (SB 450), the second would make the state’s law requiring parental consent for a minor to receive abortion care even more severe (SB 753) and the third would gut the state’s civil rights laws by allowing a range of individuals and businesses to discriminate as long as it’s based on a sincerely held religious belief (SB 197). It was as easy as 1, 2, 3.
Yesterday, reports emerged that President Donald Trump was reviewing the draft of another alarming executive order, one that would roll back existing protections barring discrimination against LGBTQ people.
Today, President-elect Donald Trump named yet another troubling pick for his cabinet: he’s tapped U.S. Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.) for Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS).
HHS is responsible for implementing the Affordable Care Act (ACA), as well as many vital social service programs including those for early-childhood education and adoption and foster care. While Price’s nomination will be controversial because of his clear desire to fully dismantle the ACA, those who support religious freedom should also have concerns.
Americans United in July took aim at a dangerous piece of legislation in Congress that would give religious fundamentalists broad powers to discriminate against LGBT Americans and others.
The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee heard testimony July 12 – the one-month anniversary of the shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando – on H.R. 2802, the deceptively named “First Amendment Defense Act” (FADA).
Yesterday was the one-month anniversary of the shooting at an LGBT nightclub in Orlando that killed 49 people. This has been a difficult month for the LGBT community, yet on the anniversary, House Republicans held a hearing on a bill aimed at allowing discrimination against same-sex couples and their families in the name of “religious freedom.”
Yesterday we celebrated the one-year anniversary of Obergefell v. Hodges, the landmark Supreme Court decision that made marriage equality the law of the land. Today we want to remind you that there’s still much work to do.
Americans United has been keeping tabs on a number of bills in the states that purport to defend “religious freedom” while actually undermining that principle.
These proposals are a response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 2015 decision upholding marriage equality. They take several forms.
Multiple states are considering socalled “First Amendment Defense Acts.” Some of these bills simply state that no member of the clergy can be compelled to preside at a same-sex wedding.