President Obama Puts More Abortion Advocates on White House Faith Council
by Steven Ertelt
April 7, 2009
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — President Barack Obama has put more abortion advocates on his White House advisory council for faith-based issues. The new pro-abortion activists join the abortion advocates the president already placed on the panel, which is supposed to help lead the way in reducing abortions.
On Monday, Obama also announced that Bishop Charles E. Blake and Harry Knox will fill out the roster of 25 people on the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.
Knox is the director of the religion and faith program at Human Rights Campaign, a Washington gay rights group that also strongly supports abortion.
Frances Kissling, the former president of the so-called "Catholics for a Free Choice" group that backs abortion, applauded the decision and called it "a good choice."
"I certainly hope that Harry is equally active in protecting a womans right to choose and non-discrimination against women on the grounds of their sexual and reproductive lives. We do not need single issue advocates on this Council that is so stacked against progressive religious thought," he said.
Obama also appointed Rev. Peg Chemberlin, the president-elect of the National Council of Churches USA, a collection of mainline Protestant church — many of which hold pro-abortion positions.
Nancy Ratzan, board chair of the National Council of Jewish Women, has also been named to the White House office and her group is a longtime abortion supporter.
The group helped organize the pro-abortion march prominent pro-abortion groups organized nationally in April 2004.
"For us, it’s a matter of freedom — personal and religious freedom. There is a lot on the line, and we can’t leave it all to elections. It’s the grassroots activism that occurs between elections that influences policy," a NCJW representative said beforehand.
Meanwhile, Blake is the presiding bishop of the Church of God in Christ a black Pentecostal denomination, is one of the few pro-life advocates on the panel.
During the Democratic National Convention last summer, Bishop Blake unequivocally denounced abortion, saying God could not be pleased with millions of lives being ended by elective abortion.
He called on Obama to "follow through on his promise … to reduce the number of abortions," by doing more than mentioning it in the platform.
"Surely we cannot be pleased with … millions of terminated pregnancies," he said. "Something within us must be calling for a better way. If we do not resist at this point, at what point will we resist?"
Previous members Obama put on the White House faith council included Joshua DuBois, a 26-year old political activist who headed up religious outreach for the Obama campaign.
Rabbi David Saperstein, director of the Washington-based Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, a political group, is also involved. The center Saperstein heads agreed to co-sponsor the national pro-abortion march Planned Parenthood, NARAL and other abortion advocates organized in 2004.
Bishop Vashti McKenzie, the first female bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, is involved in the group.
In November 2006, she signed her name to a letter blasting pro-life advocates for saying Sen. Barack Obama should not be welcomed at an AIDS summit hosted by evangelical church pastor Rick Warren because of his pro-abortion views.
The list also includes megachurch pastor Joel Hunter, who claims to be pro-life but agreed to deliver the closing prayer at the Democratic convention and has distorted the pro-life record of former President Bush.
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