Religious Zeal in the Justice Dept. Impacts Civil Rights

Weekly Voting Rights News Update

This an entry in a series of blogs to keep people informed on current election reform and voting rights issues in the news.

Featured Story of the Week:

Justice Dept. Reshapes Its Civil Rights Mission - New York Times

"The shift at the Justice Department has significantly altered the government's civil rights mission," in favor of religion rather than race, the New York Times reported Thursday.

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Fred Thompson was Pro-Choice during 1994 Senate Race

Yes this is a documented fact although it will be censored by RedState and others of their ilk. But they can't hide the truth forever. I can't wait until the Religious Right-Social Conservative Cabal realizes that it has to suck up to another Flip-Flopper (although not nearly as bad a Flip-Flopper as Romney) especially when it comes to abortion the one issue that turns them into frothing at the mouth rabid hysterical zealots. Fred Thompson also supported the McCain-Feingold bill which the Social Conservatives hate.  He also supported John McCain over Bush in 2000 although that shouldn't be held against anybody.

The Republican party is disintegrating right in front of our eyes especially the Religious Right-Social Conservative wing of the party. They are so desperate that the majority of them are supporting an openly pro-choice candidate (Rudy Giuliani). Social Conservatives believe that Fred Thompson will be their savior from having to support a Mormon (Romney) , a Maverick (McCain) , an openly pro-choice and pro gay rights candidate (Giuliani) or any of the other 7 candidates who don't have a chance to win.

Link to DailyKos

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Religion: Progressives Left Behind?

Media coverage of religion has increased significantly since the 2004 elections. Unfortunately, the coverage has presented a skewed picture of religion in America -- one in which religious conservatives are the experts on mainstream issues. I'm sure you agree this is a far cry from reality. The fact is we live in a country in which 90 percent of our people identify themselves as religious, with conservatives representing only a small portion of that large religious community.

In a new Media Matters for America report -- "Left Behind: The Skewed Representation of Religion in Major News Media" -- we document the media's coverage of religion since the 2004 elections. What we found was a dramatic oversimplification of the public debate and a consistent skewing of coverage in favor of conservatives....

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First Admitted Atheist In Congress

This is a copy of a letter I wrote to Congressman Pete Stark (D-13th District, CA) on hearing the March 12th announcement  that he has gone on record acknowledging his nontheism in response to an inquiry from the Secular Coalition for America:

Dear Representative Stark,

I am not in your district and I do not know much about you personally or where you stand politically but it does not matter. I feel that you represent me in a way that my own congressman never has because I, like you, am a freethinker and a nontheist. In an environment where polls show that Americans without a god-belief are more distrusted than any other minority and that the majority of our countrymen would not vote for an atheist even if he or she were the most qualified for office, it takes a great deal of courage to take a public stance on this issue of conscience. That's true for most us. Admitting you don't believe in God can be devastating to family, career and friendships. Few of us do it lightly or without a great deal of soul-searching. I admire your courage and strength of character.

It could be that, if I were in your district, I still might not vote for you. I make my judgments based on how I feel about the political stance of the candidate on the issues, not on his or her race, creed or sexual orientation; but even if I didn't vote for you, you would still be my representative in Congress in a way no other is yet and I thank you and wish you all the best.


Hugh Kramer

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First member of Congress to openly announce nontheism

Details found at the Secular Coalition of America press release: 2.html

"Rep. Pete Stark (D-Calif.), a member of Congress since 1973, acknowledged his nontheism in response to an inquiry by the Secular Coalition for America ( ). Rep. Stark is a senior member of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee and is Chair of the Health Subcommittee."

This will hopefully be the first among many to be open about their secular beliefs.


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