As the nation anxiously awaits the Supreme Court’s decision later this summer in the marriage case Obergefell v. Hodges—which could redefine marriage and lead to the violation of the religious liberty and free speech of people of faith—new federal and state laws are already on the way to help people of faith win in court.
Attorneys for Liberty Institute—who know that winning courtroom cases often depends on exact wording of laws—have advised more than 13 states and the federal government to make sure these laws have maximum sturdiness against challenges by the radical Left. These are laws that will make it easier to win in the ongoing battle for religious freedom—including the new Pastor Protection Bill (HB 3567) in the state of Texas.
The Pastor Protection Bill ensures that the government:
- May not force a pastor, a clergy member or a church to perform a marriage or related ceremony that would violate their sincerely held religious beliefs;
- Safeguards pastors and churches from having to live in fear that the government will force them to perform marriages that violate their religious beliefs; and
- Helps Texas respect the rights of pastors and churches to hold the biblical view of marriage.
Clergy Members Shouldn’t Have to Live in Fear
The bill explicitly states that the government may not force a pastor, other clergy member, or a house of worship to perform a marriage or related ceremony that violates their sincerely held religious beliefs.
Further, it states that refusal “to provide services, accommodations, facilities, good(s) or privileges … is not the basis for a civil or criminal cause of action or any other action” by the state or a political subdivision of the state.
The bill was written by Texas State Representatives Scott Sanford (R-McKinney), Byron Cook (R-Corsicana), Debbie Riddle (R-Houston), J.M. Lozano (R-Kingsville), and Patricia Harless (R-Houston).
Of course, writing the bill is one thing. Passing it is another, even in a state like Texas.
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SOURCE: Liberty Institute