Monday, July 11, 2016

Chaffetz Shows His Dark Side on Freedom of Religion

Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah)
In 2012, I thought Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) was an overgrown junior higher. His idea of first rate campaign strategy was crashing Newt Gingrich's campaign events. But Chaffetz has graduated to the dark side of procedurally opposing legislative attempts to enhance First Amendment religious liberty protection. Protection which he supposedly supports enough to co-sponsor a bill he won't allow through his committee.

Chaffetz refuses to carry out his power as chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee to forward a bill preventing the federal government from discriminating against government contractors and stripping institutions of tax exempt status if they hold standard Judeo-Christian views on marriage and sexual identity. The bill has 171 co-sponsors including Chaffetz himself (!) and every Republican on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee except Michael Turner and Justin Amash. But Chaffetz won't allow it out of committee for a floor vote.

From Daniel Horowitz:
Exhibit A for why the sexual identity movement is so emboldened to pursue their fascistic disruption of the civil society and private property is Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah (B, 80%). 
One of the first responses to the growing trend of anti-religious bigotry was the First Amendment Defense Act (FADA), introduced by Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah (A, 100%) and Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho (A, 95%) last June. To stem the tide of criminalizing all the world’s major religions, including our founding Judeo-Christian values, this legislation would have prevented the federal government from discriminating against government contractors who don’t follow the culture warriors of the Left on questions related to same-sex marriage or other items on the sexual identity menu. It would also protect the tax exempt status of those institutions that don’t subscribe to Hollywood’s sense of morality. It was really very limited in scope and didn’t even address the broader issues of states and judges coercing individuals to service gay weddings or provide contraception coverage or transgender bathrooms. Nor did it address the actual jurisdiction of the judiciary over marriage, something Congress can easily remedy, as I detail in Stolen Sovereignty. But it was at least something. 
The bill has 171 co-sponsors, including almost every Republican on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, the panel with jurisdiction over this particular issue. Yet, Rep. Chaffetz, the committee chairman, at the behest of House leadership has refused to schedule a markup for the bill in committee. After much pressure from outside conservative groups, Chaffetz will finally hold a hearing on Tuesday, but from what I’m hearing there is no intention to schedule a markup, much less a floor vote. The committee hearing will offer the Democrat minority a number of their own witnesses, beyond the customary single minority witness. Aside from Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La. (D, 66%), not a single other member of the leadership team has signed onto the bill. That is not a coincidence. 
Keep in mind how swiftly Republican leaders bring politically correct legislation to the floor without any committee process or any member co-sponsors when it suits their needs. They brought this ridiculous Muslim Brotherhood/gun control bill to the floor out of thin air until it was opposed by rank-and-file members.
Why would Chaffetz stonewall a bill he's supposedly co-sponsoring? Horowitz says it's because House leadership isn't for it. But, maybe it's because Chaffetz has no principles. He signed on as co-sponsor because it would look good. But, he doesn't really care about protecting the religious liberty of those with traditional religious values. Chaffetz is not only an embarrassment because of his juvenile campaign tactics, but he is a part of the rot that has made Republican congressional leadership a mere appendage of the liberal Democrat agenda.


MAX Redline said...

It'd be nice to be rid of this clown, but he's a "good establishment" guy.

T. D. said...

Chaffetz seemed so good at first. Sometimes his talk is on target, but he has gone from being a mere disappointment with his "occupy" campaign tactics to now actually using his position to stonewall legislation he supposedly supports. I think you're right. He is a good establishment guy. He learned early.