by Countable | 7.27.17
On Wednesday, President Trump announced his nomination of beleaguered Kansas Governor Sam Brownback to head the State Department’s Office of International Religious Freedom.
Brownback, a convert to Roman Catholicism, responded to the news with a tweet:
"Religious freedom is the first freedom. The choice of what you do with your own soul. I am honored to serve such an important cause."
If the Senate approves his nomination, Brownback will be responsible for monitoring and responding to threats to religious freedom around the world.
At a news conference on Thursday, the Republican governor accepted the nomination, saying, "I am honored to assume - if approved by the Senate - such an important role." Brownback, who’s served in both the House and Senate, continued, "The issue of religious freedom is incredibly important and this administration is committed to working on it and working aggressively on this topic. I look forward to carrying this mantle of international religious liberty and freedom around the world on a number of topics.”
The White House announced Brownback’s nomination by noting that "while a member of the Senate, he worked actively on the issue of religious freedom in multiple countries and was a key sponsor of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998."
Brownback, who has about 18 months left on his second term, said there’s no timetable for when he’ll transition to Religious Ambassador. The transition cannot happen soon enough for many in Kansas: Brownback is one of America’s least-popular governors.
In 2012, Brownback launched a series of tax cuts which he said would deliver "a shot of adrenaline" to Kansas’ economy. The former Congressman promised these cuts would make Kansas a “red state model” for the rest of the nation.
Alas, his conservative fiscal policies were more of a shot of novocaine, and they sent state revenues plummeting. In June, the Kansas legislature – including many in his own party – overrode Brownback’s veto of a bill that reversed the tax cuts.
"Sam Brownback will be remembered for becoming the most unpopular governor in America," Senate Democratic Leader Anthony Hensley, of Topeka, said in a statement on Twitter. "His tax experiment failed to grow the economy as he promised. Instead, his policies have bankrupted our state."
Not everyone in Kansas is as critical as Hensley. Republican State Senator Ty Masterson lauded the governor’s accomplishments to the New York Times, noting that during Brownback’s tenure, Kansas went from "an abortion state to a strong anti-abortion state, and from a high-income-tax to a low-income-tax state."
Brownback’s departure would elevate Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer to the governorship.
(Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore / Creative Commons)
Written by Countable
Brownback proves the truth that if Trump picks you, there's something major wrong with you.
WTH ever happened to the Constitutional principle of separation of church and state? And I already thought we had an ambassador to the Vatican? I'm unalterably opposed to to turning the USA into a theocracy.
Governor Brownback has been a disaster as a public servant. Will he work to ensure the separation of church and state? Doubtful. We have freedom of religion and freedom from religion. Brownback is a dangerous demagogue. Do not vote for approval.
Shhhhh Listen Hear that It's the entire state of Kansas breathing a sigh of relief This day just keeps getting better Full psych work ups and daily drug test should be mandatory for everyone receiving taxpayer money and health benefits Just read the rant of new coms director Get this man off my payroll now
Do not approve Gov. Brownback. His dismal record as governor of Kansas and stance on abortion rights should preclude the possibility of his holding any position in the administration.
Whatever. These ridiculous, hateful people really expect us to buy the concern Over religion. Another right denying red herring. This administration makes me ill.
This administration is a rogues gallery of cons, thieves, liars, theocrats, and failed lobbyist-owned career politicians who shame our nation, threaten our democracy, betray the Constitution, and damage our reputation. Religious Freedom my Catholic ass. This is code for religious influence over our secular government and defies separation of church and state. #resist #ImpeachTrumpNow
We have an Ambassador of Religious Freedom? Ugh!
So you can be a total misogynist, confabulator,and racist, bankrupt your state, demand abstinence only be taught in your schools and deny woman abortions, be totally anti-LBGTQ, gerrymander the shit out of your state and stop all reproductive rights for women on top of shoving religion down everyone's throats and still they promote your ass to a position beating people to death with the Bible. Great way not to establish a National religion.
Ambassador for Religious Freedom??? GMAFB. What we really need is an Ambassador for Logic & Reason.
"Religious freedom" has come to mean that you will knuckle under to a perverse understanding of selected Old Testament "clobber verses" that demean women and favor straight cis males, or you will surrender your freedom "for your own good because God loves you too much to leave you in sin."
Preventing woman from having abortions is a one sided religious freedom. If trump picked him , watch out , something no good is afoot.
This a ridiculous, unnecessary appointment. It not only violates our constitution, but it would allow for those who are prejudiced to justify their actions against those with whom they disagree. We're in America, there is no place for religion in government here. Thealots have already highjacked the GOP, do we want to spread this kind of hate not only in our own country, but elsewhere? These people must be stopped!
Why do we need an ambassador of religious freedom? We are guaranteed religious freedom under the First Amendment.
I'm still trying to figure out how in the world we have a government agency for religious freedom. What happened to the separation of church and state. I wouldn't trust anyone that the Liar in Chief appoints to any position, let alone a religious position. The Liar in Chief knows nothing about the Constitution, so how much do you actually think he knows about religion? He worships the almighty dollar and himself.
Religious bigotry would be more like it.
Brownback as Ambassador of Religious Freedom? Seriously? Now that's an oxymoron if I've ever heard one. Classic 45. He has "drained the swamp" by filling it with greedy money grabbing swamp monsters and he has appointed completely incompetent cabinet members who have openly voiced their desires to eliminate the very agencies they are supposed to lead who are now actively seeking to undermine those agencies. So appointing a small-minded, bigoted failure of a governor to liaison for religious freedom is certainly par for the course. (Innuendo intended.) It's an awful move on 45's part. Still, I'm happy for Kansas. Maybe now they can get their schools and public services and their state back.
Separation of church and state. We do not need a department to investigate religious freedom. It is already in the constitution.
Religious freedom for who? The only religion being persecuted in this country is Islam. Does this mean Muslim's are going to protected in this country?? I hope so, because I respect and admire Kareem Abdul Jabber and this country SHOULD MAKE A NATIONAL HOLIDAY AFTER MUHAMMAD ALI. I had roommates in college (in the 90's) from Africa that were Muslim, I hope they are protected by this new bill. But alas, we live in world where white Christians feel they are attacked because they refuse to listen to anything Jesus taught after he was born. Heaven help us from the Manchurian and his bigotry, and his bigoted administration . . .
Why should Kansas even need the help of the Federal Government. It is home to two of the richest men in America. The same two men that are driving our entire economic recovery model. Surely, such a wonderful and grand model would have the those in Kansas living a life of economic bliss. Here in Colorado we heard everyday how this model of freedom for corporations, limited government, on minimal government will refuel our entire economy. As they say, Make America Great. So then if this is true, why does Kansas need our help? I don't see Washington asking for help. Oh wait, could that be because Jeff Bezos's the richest man in America believes in sending the elevator back down.... who says a little socialism isn't good.