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How Do You Get Policy Change In Washington?: Persistence, Persistence, Persistence

When President George W. Bush took office, his administration set about to change the rules for how the federal government funds faith-based organizations to perform social services, like running soup kitchens, job training programs and homeless shelters. He established the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, which worked with agencies across the federal government to weaken the longstanding church-state protections that had applied to these programs. Read more

Down With Discrimination: Broad Coalition Of 130 Organizations Asks President Obama To End Taxpayer-Funded Discrimination

President Barack Obama’s White House website stresses that he is a civil rights president who is “leading the fight to protect everyone – no matter who you are, where you’re from, what you look like, or who you love.” Yet, the president continues to enforce a policy that allows taxpayer-funded religious discrimination. Read more

A Tribute To Frank Lautenberg: New Jersey Senator Was Strong Supporter Of Church-State Separation

Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) died early this morning, and with his death, the last of a generation has passed from the U.S. Senate. At 89, he had been the oldest member of the upper chamber and the last to have served in the Second World War. Read more

The Year That Was: Major Church-State Developments From 2012

The end of the year is a time for lists. You’re probably seeing a lot of them – “25 Best Books of 2012,” “10 Overlooked Movies,” “What’s Hot and What’s Not” or whatever.

Along those lines, here’s a list of the Top Ten Church-State Stories from 2012 (listed in no particular order): Read more

Good Question, Not-So-Good Answer: Obama’s Muddled Response On ‘Faith-Based’ Job Bias

With all of the talk about the U.S. debt ceiling, it’s sometimes easy to forget that other issues are out there. Even as he attempts to strike a deal to keep America solvent, President Barack Obama continues to address other topics. Read more

Faith-Based Frenzy: Kansas Governor Preaches Religion As Solution To Social Problems

Since Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback’s first day in office, he has made it clear that he no problems blurring the church-state line.

In January, he all but turned his swearing-in ceremony into a religious revival, and he noted his intention to use religion as a way to help the state face its economic and social problems. It now seems those plans are well on their way. Read more

‘Faith-Based’ Fracas: Supreme Court Lets Taxpayer Challenge Go Forward In Kentucky

Americans United got some good news yesterday in a “faith-based” funding case that began back in 2000.

The lawsuit was brought on behalf of Alicia Pedreira and other Kentucky taxpayers against the Kentucky Baptist Homes for Children. Using millions in public funds, the sectarian childcare agency has been indoctrinating children in religious beliefs and discriminating on religious grounds in employment, firing Pedreira for being a lesbian. Read more