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Where Do Candidates Stand on Religious Freedom?

Postmillennialism —  Leave a comment

As perceived attacks on religious freedom in the U.S. and the very real persecution of believers in the rest of the world have taken center stage recently, it’s more important than ever to know where the nation’s presidential candidates stand on basic human rights, said the president of Open Doors USA.

Carl A. Moeller, whose organization provides support to persecuted Christians in 60 countries, told The Christian Post that while most people would assume that religious liberty is a basic right that presidential hopefuls could easily get behind, a Presidential Pledge for Religious Freedom he co-authored has been signed by only one candidate, Rick Santorum.

Although Santorum signed the petition in early February, Moeller made it clear that Open Doors does not endorse any particular candidate and the pledge is meant as a way for voters to know where the candidates stand.

“The pledge is to help encourage people to make informed choices based on the candidates’ responses to that position. It’s a way to show how candidates stack up on the question,” he explained. “What we would normally consider to be an assumed right and universally accepted thing has become a more or less sort of curiosity that only one candidate has signed on it.”

A lot of the recent attention on religious freedom from the international front can be attributed to the case of Iranian Christian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani, who has been awaiting a final decision on his death sentence for his faith. The U.S. Congress unanimously approved a new resolution recently condemning the Iranian government for sentencing to death Nadarkani, who has been charged with apostasy and attempting to evangelize Muslims.

Here in the U.S., Christian leaders say that religious freedom is threatened by Obama’s health care HHS mandate that requires employers to provide health insurance coverage for contraception, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs. Many religious groups are opposed to the mandate on the grounds that it violates their freedom of conscience and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

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