LCMS Response: Religious Freedom at Risk

An important response by LCMS President Matthew Harrison to yesterday’s SCOTUS ruling on “ObamaCare”.

ST. LOUIS, June 28, 2012—In response to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling today to largely let stand the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), the Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison, president of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod, issued the following statement:

“In light of today’s ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court on the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), we remain opposed to the controversial birth control mandate, which is one of the requirements included in the law.

“The Court’s decision today guarantees that we will continue to bring awareness to the threat to religious liberty represented by the birth control mandate, which requires virtually all health plans, including those of religious organizations, to cover birth control drugs and products that could cause the death of the unborn. We are opposed to the birth control mandate because it runs counter to the biblical truth of the sanctity of human life and creates a conflict of conscience for religious employers and insurers, who face steep penalties for non-compliance based upon their religious convictions.

“We will continue to stand with those who have filed suit in the many religious freedom cases pending against the birth control mandate. Through education and civic advocacy, we will continue to educate the public about the vital necessity of protecting our First Amendment right to act according to the tenets of our faith. We remain steadfast in our opposition to the birth control mandate and will continue working to ensure our right to refrain from paying for products and services that conflict with our doctrine about the sanctity of all human life.

“And, regardless of the Court’s decision on the health care reform law, we in the LCMS will continue to uphold the sanctity of all human life while we care for the sick and work to restore the health and well-being of people in our communities and around the world.”

About The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod
The 2.3 million-member Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod is a mission-oriented, Bible-based, confessional Christian denomination headquartered in St. Louis. Through acts of witness and mercy, the church carries out its mission worldwide to make known the love of Jesus Christ. Learn more at http://www.lcms.org.

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Santorum:”It takes a family”

Great analysis of the record of Rick Santorum.

, U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania.

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It is hardly surprising that faith and family would be at the core of who Senator Santorum is. He is a very devout Catholic. Anecdotally, Brian Wilson — formerly Fox News correspondent and now co-anchor of The Morning Majority on Washington’s WMAL AM/FM — saw the candidate in an unguarded moment.

As Wilson was in South Carolina covering the primary there last month, it was very early in the dark of morning that he saw Santorum stop in what the senator thought was a private moment, and bow his head in prayer. “He didn’t know that I was watching him,” Wilson reported. The senator was unaware anyone had seen him. The point: When you don’t think anyone is watching, that’s the time when the authentic in you emerges.

Such a moment certainly adds credence to the label of “social conservative”.  But Rick Santorum isn’t exclusively focused on social issues.

On National Security:

The Pennsylvania Republican was a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee for eight years, where he earned a reputation as a “hawk” in the sense that Americans deserved no less than a first-class military capable of providing the maximum strength to protect our homeland.

Santorum advocated an aggressive military posture toward regimes in Iran, Syria, and China. All three, in different ways, pose a threat to the United States — more so today than at that time.

As a senator, Santorum promoted support for opponents of the Iranian regime which today threatens Israel and the U.S. with nuclear weapons. In his presidential bid, he has laid out a 15-point plan for dealing with Iran’s current nuclear muscle-flexing.

On Terrorism:

In July of 2006, Senator Santorum delivered a major foreign policy address at the National Press Club where he said that America is not at war with “terror” per se. Terror, he explained, is merely the method of our enemies. The definition of our enemy, he stressed, is Islamic fascism, and we need to start calling it by its correct name.

Jobs and the Economy

The Santorum campaign advocates a zero tax on manufacturing industries. That should appeal to blue-collar workers.

Other proposals include cutting $5 trillion in federal spending in five years; repeal and replace Obamacare with market-based healthcare innovation; improve quality and access to healthcare; cut EPA resources for job-killing regulations; and eliminate funding for Dodd-Frank regulatory burdens.

Certainly proof that Rick Santorum is not just focused on social issues, with substantive views on a range of issues.  And if he were to win the GOP nomination and the Presidency he would join some elite company.

If he ultimately wins the White House, Mr. Santorum will be only the third president in history to achieve that goal after having been defeated for a lower position. The previous two were Abraham Lincoln in 1860 and Richard Nixon in 1968.

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Obama: I’ll Decide What’s Constitutional

The assault on the 2nd Amendment and the Constitution by the Obama administration continues.

Just a few days before Christmas, Obama served notice to all Americans that he will continue to abuse executive privilege by seeking new ways to vilify gun owners and further his anti-gun agenda.

Congress placed a provision in the $1 trillion omnibus spending bill for 2012 designed to bar the National Institutes of Health (NIH) from using any of its $30.7 billion taxpayer funds to “advocate or promote gun control.” However, upon signing the bill into law, President Obama issued a caveat of his own:

I have advised Congress that I will not construe these provisions as preventing me from fulfilling my constitutional responsibility to recommend to the Congress’s consideration such measures as I shall judge necessary and expedient.

In other words: “Congress may pass laws, but I decide which of its laws are constitutional and which I can simply choose to ignore.”

Of course, the Constitution doesn’t actually give the president this power, but Obama won’t allow a little thing like the U.S. Constitution get in his way. And in the present case, Congress is right to try to prevent him from using a federal health agency, not to mention our tax dollars, as a weapon in his ongoing war against the Second Amendment. As The Washington Times reports, NIH has wasted over $5 million since 2002 producing deceptive studies aimed at furthering gun control — including one study that tried “to prove that a home without firearms was essential to a child’s safety and well-being.”

Even more importantly, Congress knows that there is no scheme too radical, or dangerous, for the Obama administration when it comes to using federal agencies to push its anti-gun agenda.

In other words the administration of President Obama has no qualms with bypassing Congress when it comes to his agenda.

Last month, email exchanges surfaced between employees at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (BATFE) that show the administration helped illegally transfer guns to violent Mexican drug cartels in order to manufacture a case for gun registration. Now gun dealers in four Southwest border states must abide by a new gun registration requirement, courtesy of BATFE, that forces them to register the sales of any law-abiding American who purchases more than one semi-automatic rifle within five business days.

Congress never passed any law like this. Rather, Obama’s BATFE orchestrated the deadly “Fast and Furious” gun-walking scandal to give cause for its unconstitutional gun-control edict. Given this, how hard is it to envision the Obama administration issuing a phony “health” study that maligns gun owners?

Yet another reason why in 2012 the American people must vote President Obama out of office.

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Obama About To Get Dose of Con Law?

It appears that President Obama is about to get schooled in Constitutional Law by some GOP Senators.

six Republican Senators have been drafting legislation that may very well treat President Barack Obama to a dose of his own Constitutional law ‘medicine,’ before the end of next month.

Senator John Hoeven of North Dakota is leading a team of key Senators, which include Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Richard Lugar (R-IN), David Vitter (R-LA), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Mike Johanns (R-NE), who are working on the measure to assume control of the permit approval process of the Canada-to-Texas Keystone XL oil pipeline project, according to a Reuters article today.

Last November, President Obama put off having to make the permit decision for the pipeline until 2013, well past the upcoming November elections, with most not buying the “environmental concerns”, unless it includes his desire to assuage his environmental extremist voter base.

But, a hard-fought Republican provision in the very contentious bill granting the two-month extension of the payroll tax holiday–passed during the above mentioned ‘do nothing pro forma sessions’ of the Senate mentioned above–President Obama is forced either approve the permit, which would immediately create 20,000 high paying construction jobs, or give a formal statement as to why it is not in the interest of the country to permit it…by February 21, 2012.

And it’s a move that is legal per the Constitution of the United States.

Should President Obama prohibit his State Department from approving the permit, the measure would then provide a legal segue for the Senate to take up and vote on the question, as is unequivocally provided for in the U.S. Constitution–regardless of the decades of convention that has allowed the State Department to handle such matters.

Ryan Bernstein, an energy adviser to Hoeven, cited the powers given to Congress in the Constitution to regulate commerce with foreign nations.  “We believe that express authority in the Constitution gives Congress the ability to approve and move forward on such a project.”

Head over to the source to see why Republican Senators are making this move.

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