IN Gov. Mike Pence Says Religious Freedom Law Needs “Clarification”

IN Gov. Mike Pence Says Religious Freedom Law Needs "Clarification"

IN Gov. Mike Pence Says Religious Freedom Law Needs “Clarification” (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

Indiana religious freedom law

INDIANA RELIGIOUS FREEDOM LAW:  Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) said the religious freedom legislation that he signed in private needs “clarification” and a “fix” after outrage and protests erupt over perception that the LGBT community could face discrimination. Never mind the fact that Gov. Pence got support on the bill from three homophobic men.

Gov. Pence said the Religious Freedom Restoration Act is not a license to discriminate. He called on the general assembly to send him a bill this week with language fixing the “perception” problem the law he signed has.

The governor also said he and his family marched across the Edmund Pettus Bridge with Rep. John Lewis to commemorate the Bloody Sunday. He maintained that he does not condone discrimination of any kind. Funny, on his campaign website in 2000 he said, “Congress should oppose any effort to recognize homosexual’s as a ‘discreet and insular minority’ entitled to the protection of anti-discrimination laws similar to those extended to women and ethnic minorities.” Kinda makes his “commitment” to equality for all ring hollow.

Pence said Indiana has passed a law that mirrors federal legislation the former president Bill Clinton signed and that mirrors that of other states. He says religious freedom is vital in our country. He also said Barack Obama supported the legislation in Congress, which had broad bipartisan support. The fact is he’s wrong. Both men didn’t support the same kind of legislation.

He blamed some in the media for “reckless” reporting of the law, but meanwhile he was flanked by anti-gay folks in a previous picture. Pence said he was hurt by the media’s portrayal of the law, which has hurt Indiana.

Pence said there is a “gross mischaracterization” of the law and “reckless” reporting in the first few days fueled the outrage.

Gov. Pence is missing the point….

Mike Pence’s talking points ignore the fact that his law has language that is not contained in the federal RFRA. For example, the Indiana act defines a “person” as including a “limited liability company, a corporation, a company, a firm, a society and a joint-stock company.” What that does is effectively grants companies a right to use religion as the basis for their actions.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest said during his press briefing on Tuesday, “It leaves open the question of what sort of religious views a joint stock company would hold, but that may be something for lawyers to ponder.”

Further, the federal RFRA says that a person whose religious exercise has been burdened “may assert that violation as a claim or defense in a judicial proceeding and obtain appropriate relief against a government.” The Indiana RFRA goes a step further, adding that a person (which could be a company), may use religion as a claim or defense in a proceeding “regardless of whether the state or any other governmental entity is a party to the proceeding.”

So, what this all means is that a company can cite religion in a private lawsuit. If a bakery refuses to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple because they disagree with their sexual orientation on the basis of religion, they could invoke the Indiana RFRA. That’s what Mike Pence and all the supporters of this bill are deliberately ignoring. So, going a step further…what’s next? Discriminating against blacks and Hispanics on the basis of religion?

What’s next for the right wingnuts?

Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act BS

Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act BS (Cartoon Credit: Joe Heller)

By the way, the same drama is about to play out in Arkansas, where they just passed similar legislation. Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) also said he will sign the bill into law.

President Obama to Make First Official Visit to Kenya

President Obama to Make First Official Visit to Kenya

President Obama to Make First Official Visit to Kenya (Photo Credit: Donkey Hotey)

President Obama will make his first official trip to Kenya in July. The White House said he will attend the Global Entrepreneurship Summit, which will be attended by business leaders, governments and international organizations.

Obama visited Kenya as a senator but never as the president.

President Obama’s father was born in Kenya and had returned there shortly after his birth. He died more than 30 years ago.

California AG Kamala Harris Seeks to Block “Kill the Gays” Ballot Initiative

California AG Kamala Harris Seeks to Block "Kill the Gays" Ballot Iniative

California AG Kamala Harris Seeks to Block “Kill the Gays” Ballot Iniative (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

California Attorney General Kamala Harris is seeking to block the “kill the gays” ballot initiative that authorizes the killing of gays and lesbians.

Matt McLaughlin, a Huntington Beach attorney, paid $200 to file the “Sodomite Suppression Act.” Harris, a U.S. Senate candidate issued her first public statement about Sodomite Suppression Act:

“As Attorney General of California, it is my sworn duty to uphold the California and United States Constitutions and to protect the rights of all Californians.  This proposal not only threatens public safety, it is patently unconstitutional, utterly reprehensible, and has no place in a civil society. Today, I am filing an action for declaratory relief with the Court seeking judicial authorization for relief from the duty to prepare and issue the title and summary for the “Sodomite Suppression Act.” If the Court does not grant this relief, my office will be forced to issue a title and summary for a proposal that seeks to legalize discrimination and vigilantism.”

SCOTUS Tosses Alabama Redistricting Plan Ruling to Pack Black Voters in Certain Districts

SCOTUS Throws Out Ruling On Alabama's Redistricting Plan

SCOTUS Throws Out Ruling On Alabama’s Redistricting Plan (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

The U.S. Supreme Court throws out ruling that upheld Alabama’s redistricting plan that would pack certain districts with mostly black voters. The case has been sent back to a lower court.

On a 5-4 vote, the court threw out a lower court ruling that had upheld the plan, saying it was “legally erroneous.”

But the court avoided deciding whether the redistricting plan proposed by the Republican-controlled state legislature in 2012 violates the U.S. Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection under the law by concentrating black voters, who tend to vote Democratic, into a small number of districts. Source: Daily Mail

James Baker Blasts Benjamin Netanyahu as “Obstacle to Peace”

James Baker slams Benjamin Netanyahu as an "obstacle to peace"

James Baker slams Benjamin Netanyahu as an “obstacle to peace” (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

Former secretary of state James Baker, who served during former president George H.W. Bush’s administration, blasted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as an “obstacle to peace,” echoing similar comments made by White House Chief of Stff Denis McDonough, Haaretz reports.

Baker slammed Netanyahu’s “diplomatic missteps and political gamesmanship,” saying his “actions have not matched his rhetoric.”

James Baker said “the lack of progress regarding a lasting peace” plan for a two-state solution diminished since Netanyahu’s reelection last week. In other words, John Boehner and other Republicans lawmakers are kissing up to Netanyahu as though he’s the moral authority on what the Obama adminstration should do with regard to Iran and Palestine.

Baker’s comments come as the Wall Street Journal reported that Israel spied on the closed-door nuclear negotiations with Iran and shared the information with U.S. lawmakers. A seniro U.S. official told the WSJ, “It is one thing for the U.S. and Israel to spy on each other.””It is another thing for Israel to steal U.S. secrets and play them back to U.S. legislators to undermine U.S. diplomacy.”

Benjamin Netanyahu is acting as though his country gives the U.S. millions of dollars and other support, including their Iron Dome, instead of the other way around.

US Amb. Mark Lippert Attacked by Man Upset Over S. Korea-US Military Exercises

U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Mark Lippert was attacked by a man upset over South Korea-US military exercises. The man, who has been arrested, used a razor blade to slash Lippert in the face. Why didn’t the ambassador have more security around him?

Here’s a tweet from Yonhap:

US Amb. Mark Lippert Attacked by Man Upset Over S. Korea-US Military Exercises

US Amb. Mark Lippert Attacked by Man Upset Over S. Korea-US Military Exercises

Lippert was hospitalized after the razor-blade attack, which occurred before a lecture on Korean reunification at the Sejong Center on Thursday morning. His injuries are non-life threatening.

Korean media reports that someone shouted “North Korea and South Korea should be unified.” “No to war training.” Lippert is listed in stable condition at a local hospital.

Mark Lippert’s attacker, has only been identified by his last name, “Kim,” and is said to be 55 years old.

Right Wing Blogger Erick Erickson: Obama Not a Christian in “Any Meaningful Way”

Right Wing Blogger Erick Erickson: Obama Not a Christian in "Any Meaningful Way"

Right Wing Blogger Erick Erickson: Obama Not a Christian in “Any Meaningful Way” (Photo Credit: Twitter)


Right wing stupidity hits a fever pitch. Right wing blogger Erick Erickson tweeted, “I don’t think Barack Obama is a Christian. He certainly is not one in any meaningful way.” Um, so I guess by his standard Jesus wasn’t a “meaningful” Christian since he was all for helping the poor and the downtrodden. That’s quite the opposite of the Republican Party’s belief. They are all for the fabulously wealthy….#ijs

Here’s the reaction on Twitter to Erick Erickson’s tweet (by the way, he blocked us, must have been after we commented on another stupid tweet he sent in the past):

Failed Presidential Candidate Rudy Giuliani Doesn’t Believe Obama Loves America

Failed Presidential Candidate Rudy Giuliani Doesn't Believe Obama Loves America

Failed Presidential Candidate Rudy Giuliani Doesn’t Believe Obama Loves America (Photo Credit: YouTube Video Screengrab)

Rudy Giuliani is using that old, tired and failed line that President Obama doesn’t love America. Yes, we see where that got the Republican Party in 2012 — Obama beat Mitt Romney by a landslide.

Rudy Giuliani went straight for the jugular Wednesday night during a private group dinner here featuring Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker by openly questioning whether President Barack Obama “loves America.”

The former New York mayor, speaking in front of the 2016 Republican presidential contender and about 60 right-leaning business executives and conservative media types, directly challenged Obama’s patriotism, discussing what he called weak foreign policy decisions and questionable public remarks when confronting terrorists.

“I do not believe, and I know this is a horrible thing to say, but I do not believe that the president loves America,” Giuliani said during the dinner at the 21 Club, a former Prohibition-era speakeasy in midtown Manhattan. “He doesn’t love you. And he doesn’t love me. He wasn’t brought up the way you were brought up and I was brought up through love of this country.”

Black Lawmakers To Netanyahu: Don’t Disrespect Our President

Black Lawmakers Tos Benjamin Netanyahu: Don't Disrespect Our President

Black Lawmakers Tos Benjamin Netanyahu: Don’t Disrespect Our President (Photo Credit: Donkey Hotey Flickr)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been put on blast by the Congressional Black Caucus, many of whom plan to skip his March 3 speech before Congress. They are telling him not to “disrespect” our president. The CBC considers Netanyahu and John Boehner’s stunt as a “slight” to President Obama and won’t support it, Politico reports.

Israeli officials have been caught by surprise by the CBC backlash, kicked off by Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), a civil rights leader who said last week he wouldn’t attend, quickly followed by Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) and others. As a result, they’re working to set up a meeting for CBC members with Ambassador Ron Dermer or even Netanyahu himself when he’s in Washington.

[..]

“It’s not just about disrespect for the president, it’s disrespect for the American people and our system of government for a foreign leader to insert himself into a issue that our policymakers are grappling with,” said Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.). “It’s not simply about President Obama being a black man disrespected by a foreign leader. It’s deeper than that.”

That was a word many members used: “It is very disrespectful to this president, and what concerns me more is that I think it’s a pattern that is starting to develop from this speaker that we’re getting more and more disrespectful of the office of the presidency,” said Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.). “I think it’s silly and petty.” Source: Politico

Netanyahu pulled another stunt during the 2012 presidential campaign when he entertained presidential candidate Mitt Romney in Israel, interjecting himself in out political process. Bibi dissed Obama when he went behind his back and accepted John Boehner’s invitation. He’s trying to score points in his upcoming election to make himself.