A Christian leader is refuting the use of religious affiliation as a litmus test for government positions – including the U.S. Supreme Court.
The confirmation hearings for Amy Coney Barrett, President Donald Trump's nominee to the Supreme Court, are set to begin October 12. She was on Capitol Hill for a second day yesterday, meeting with GOP senators as lawmakers of both parties brace for the potential of delayed election night results or a disputed presidential election that lands before the high court. She continues meetings today with senators on Capitol Hill.
Barrett, who currently sits on the Seventh U.S. Circuit Court, is a devout Catholic – but much has been made by liberal activists and some media outlets of her affiliation with the charismatic Christian religious group, People of Praise. Her critics are concerned she might make decisions on topics, such as abortion, based on those beliefs.
Dr. Richard Land, president of Southern Evangelical Seminary, explains the Sixth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution bars use of a religious test.
"And since she is an original-intent originalist, it shouldn't matter what her religious views are," says Land, "because if she is an original intent strict constructionist, as Scalia was and others are, then they are going to make their decisions based upon what the law is, not necessarily what they would like it to be."
Barrett's religious group, which includes Catholics and evangelicals, reportedly teaches that men have a certain role and women do as well. In contrast to how that's being portrayed by the mainstream media, Land says it's not discrimination.
"If people voluntarily choose in their private lives to follow scripture and to live a devoted life, that should not in any way, shape, or form be a disqualification from service in the federal judiciary or anywhere else in the federal government," he emphasizes.
With Republicans holding a 53-47 Senate majority, and just two GOP senators opposing a quick vote, Barrett appears to have enough support for confirmation. But Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer, who is among those senators refusing to meet with Barrett, has acknowledged it will be an "uphill fight" to stop Trump's nominee. He is calling the process "illegitimate," and has argued that her conservative views on health care, abortion and other issues are "far outside" the mainstream.
Land argues that every person of faith in America should be extremely concerned about liberal Democrats and their media cohorts trying to make serious, devout Christian faith a disqualification from service in the courts.