The First Amendment has been relegated to the scrap heap by the Democrats’ rush to nationalize interracial and same-sex marriages. This conflict could lead to religious schools, churches, or other institutions being punished by the government for not following the Democrat line. The bill’s feature is not a bug. It puts religious institutions at risk.
“Respect for Marriage Act” removes the Clinton-era Defense of Marriage Act. It also nationalizes gay or interracial marriages — which are legal in all states of the union. Obergefell Supreme Court affirmed same-sex nuptials. Interracial marriage laws were long ago repealed by states and enshrined by the Loving Supreme Court decision of 1967.
Democrats took advantage of codifying same-sex marriage and interracial marriage after Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, who concurred in the Dobbs abortion decision that remanded abortion decisions from the states to the states, noted that in the past activist courts had incorrectly used “substantive Due Process” to solve other issues.
We should reconsider all substantive due process precedents of this Court, including Lawrence, Griswold, and Obergefell, in future cases. Any substantive due process decision that is “demonstrably wrong” has to be corrected.
Democrats misunderstood Dobb’s decision to inflame voters during the 2022 election. They then crafted this bill.
Some senators saw that the new law would penalize religious organizations if they don’t hire trans educators, reconsider their religious beliefs for adoptions, or support interspecies marriages, and offered an amendment to stop that.
Bipartisan amendment… protects religious liberty, conscience protections, and ensures that non-religious organizations are not required to provide facilities, services, or goods for the celebrations of same-sex marriages. The bill also clarifies that the federal government is not authorized to recognize polygamy and protects any status, such as tax-exemptions or grants, of an entity, so long as it doesn’t arise from marriage.
It didn’t go far enough. Senator Mike Lee (R. Utah), a constitutional scholar who is not a fan of substantive due process law that’s freewheeling, saw a gap in the bill through which an 18-wheeler could pass. The amendment was “inadequate” to address the gravest risks presented by the bill, especially those that threaten the tax-exempt status of religious non-profits.
You can be sure that the anti-God Left will accomplish this.
— Mike Lee (@SenMikeLee) November 29, 2022
Lee stated that his “commonsense” amendment would prevent the federal government from retaliating towards any person or group who adheres to sincerely held moral convictions and religious beliefs about marriage. However, Congress is no longer in regular order and is controlled by the hard-core Democrats who limit amendments. Lee’s amendment protecting religious liberty was not approved.
Lee expressed his concerns in a statement that he made before the Senate approved this bill.
Although the tension between homosexuality and religious liberty may not be apparent to everyone, legal experts know that there is a real risk that those who do not believe in a same-sex marriage will suffer harm if they don’t have strong protections. This is because of the Supreme Court’s interpretations of federal statutes.
This risk was illustrated in the now-famous exchange between Justice Alito (then-Solicitor General) and Donald Verrilli, at the time Obergefell was argued. Verrilli rightly (and repeatedly), acknowledged that once same-sex marriage is nationally recognized, many colleges, universities, and other non-profits may lose their tax-exempt status due to their refusal, rooted primarily in religious belief, to recognize same-sex marital relationships.
According to the RFMA’s current language, many religious schools, faith-based organizations, and other non-profit entities that adhere to traditional views on marriage would face tax-exempt status loss and restricted access to a variety of federal programs. Small businesses could also be affected. Wedding vendors, including kosher caterers, would face harassment and endless lawsuits based on their beliefs.
The bill’s weaknesses are well known by Congress, and all members plan to vote for it Thursday. Joe Biden vows to sign it.
Let the phalanx begin lawsuits.