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Boehner appoints NOM co-founder to commission on religious freedom

Boehner appoints NOM co-founder to commission on religious freedom

WASHINGTON — U.S. House Speaker John Boehner on Tuesday appointed Robert George, co-founder and chairman emeritus of the National Organization for Marriage, to the U.S. Commission for International Religious Freedom, which, according to the Commission’s chairman, addresses “the challenges of religious extremism, intolerance, and repression throughout the world.”

Robert George

The appointment was announced on the same day the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) released previously sealed documents detailing how NOM has pursued “a divisive, intolerant, and racially-charged strategy to stop marriage equality in the United States.”

“For the Speaker to appoint someone who embodies NOM’s deep seated anti-gay animus is the wrong thing to do,” said HRC President Joe Solmonese.

“This appointment is counter to the Commission’s stated mission because George represents a narrow and exclusionary ideology. Unfortunately, Rep. Boehner has further aligned himself with the extremist wing of his party.”

George co-authored the Federal Marriage Amendment in 2001, which would have written discrimination into the U.S. Constitution.

In 2004, George helped draft another anti-marriage equality amendment to ban same-sex marriage, and is the author of the “Manhattan Declaration,” a 4,700-word document denouncing not just same-sex marriage, but civil unions or any other legal recognition for gay and lesbian unions.

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