In late December, you start seeing “Top Ten” lists for the year that was. So without further ado, here are the Top Ten Church-State Stories from 2016 (in my humble opinion, at least):
Today, the Senate voted to adopt a final negotiated version of the National Defense Authorization Act. The House approved the same bill last week. Notably, the bill does not include the Russell Amendment, a sweeping provision that would have sanctioned taxpayer-funded employment discrimination. This is a clear win for fairness, equality and the freedom of religion and belief.
The drama centered on the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The bill, which funds the Department of Defense and its military operations, is considered must-pass legislation. Thus, it often attracts amendments that promote socially conservative views on military issues.
Americans United and 91 organizations sent congressional leaders a letter to express strong opposition to a House of Representatives bill provision that would authorize taxpayer-funded discrimination in federal contracts and grants.
“The government should not fund discrimination and no taxpayer should be disqualified from a job under a federal contract or grant because he or she is the ‘wrong’ religion,” the Aug. 25 letter asserted.