America’s Roman Catholic bishops have joined other Christian and conservative voices in rejecting President Obama’s “compromise” on his earlier announced mandate requiring all employers — including most religious institutions — to include free contraception to women in their health insurance coverage.
 
 

Having spent time at the past two CPAC conventions as an exhibitor with The John Birch Society, and having had the Society officially disinvited to attend in 2012, some thoughts about the latest right-wing beauty contest seem appropriate. But first, some reminiscences about our presence at two previous gatherings are worthy of space.

 

After sailing through the subcommittee in late December, last Thursday by a vote of 11-7 the full Senate Judiciary Committee passed on to the full chamber a bill that would permit televising proceedings of the U.S. Supreme Court.

An attorney for an American accused of conspiring to carry out the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 has filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia challenging a new rule at the Guantanamo Bay Detention Facility instructing agents of the military and the government to read all correspondence between lawyers and those prisoners suspected of being 9/11 conspirators.

 

The mass media have repeated the official results for the Maine GOP presidential caucuses that former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney narrowly beat Texas Congressman Ron Paul by a 39 percent to 36 percent margin. But the official results are incomplete. And postponement of the results from one of Ron Paul's strongest counties, Washington County, because of a forecasted  snowstorm may alone have tipped the balance in Romney's favor.

 

Christian and pro-family groups are blasting President Obama’s “compromise” on his contraception mandate for religious groups as a meaningless distinction without a difference. On February 10, the White House announced that under a revision to the objectionable decree, religious institutions would not be required to offer free contraceptives to women employees as previously mandated. Instead, the requirement would be totally shifted to their insurance providers.

The House voted last week to delegate some of its legislative powers to the President.

Ken Paulsen, president and CEO of the First Amendment Center, wrote in USA Today that “just as police officers use technology to watch citizens, including patrol car cameras, traffic light cameras and radar to track speeding, the public [also] has a right to monitor the work of officers on the public payroll.”
 
 

The U.S. Forest Service has announced that a statue of Jesus Christ that has graced the Big Mountain ski hill in northwestern Montana’s Flathead National Forest for nearly 60 years can stay there for at least 10 more years, thwarting efforts by the secular Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) to have it removed.

 

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney has lately been arguing strenuously against the Obama administration’s decision to force all employers, regardless of their religious convictions, to provide insurance coverage for contraception, including contraceptives that can cause abortions. The government's decision has been widely denounced by officials of the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches because they are opposed to both birth control (except in certain limited circumstances) and abortion.

 

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