2016 | Week of November 14 | #1177
Election 2016 is now in the history books. Hopefully you had a part in this history by casting a knowledgeable, responsible, and prayerful vote and by encouraging others to do likewise. Now we live with the results of the election.
A couple of quick thoughts regarding those results. First, character still matters. Good policies typically come from good people. Second, as Christians we need to continue to pray for our leaders and our nation as Scripture says, effectually and fervently in the aftermath of the election.
We have been given a window of opportunity. Regarding these opportunities, I’ve been asked what I believe we might see positively from a Trump presidency. Here are some ideas that express my thoughts and my hopes.
- Planned Parenthood can be defunded.The House and Senate have both passed legislation to defund Planned Parenthood. That legislation was vetoed by President Obama. Mr. Trump has said he would sign such legislation if it comes to his desk.
- The Supreme Court will not be stacked with progressives. Justice Antonin Scalia’s seat needs to be filled. If Hillary Clinton had nominated Scalia’s replacement, the harm to the First Amendment and life would have been devastating. Other Supreme Court appointments are likely during these next four years. President-elect Trump has said he will nominate people to the Supreme Court who are like Justice Scalia, judicially conservative. If he fulfills this promise, it will likely mean good things for civil liberties and the protection of the unborn.
- ObamaCare can be repealed.Multiple times, Congress has passed legislation to repeal ObamaCare along with its promotion of abortion and multiple threats to conscience rights. President Obama, however, was not about to repeal a policy that is the foundation of his legacy. President-elect Trump has promised repeatedly to repeal ObamaCare and will begin his term with Congressional leadership that has repeatedly shown a willingness to do so.
- The transgender mandate for schools can be removed.Earlier this year, President Obama through his department of Justice and department of education issued a memo telling every school district in the country they would lose education funding unless they forced the girls in their schools to share showers and locker rooms with boys who think they are girls. A new memo from a new President or from those agencies in his administration could eliminate this threat as quickly as it was created.
- The Johnson Amendment can be repealed.For years, churches in America have lived under threat of IRS punishment if they do or say something “political.” This is because in 1954, then-Senator Lyndon Johnson fast-tracked a bill prohibiting not-for-profit organizations, including churches, from engaging in what they call “electioneering.” While no church has ever lost its tax-exempt status for saying something about politics, the IRS rule remains a threat and a source of great confusion in religious communities. During the campaign, Mr. Trump promised to repeal the Johnson Amendment. To do so, will of course, require the cooperation of Congress.
- Hope for religious freedom.President-elect Trump said repeatedly during the campaign and has clearly indicated in responses to surveys that he supports religious freedom, including the right of people not to be fired because of their beliefs regarding marriage, gender and sexuality. He has said people should not be forced to use their creative abilities to support same-sex weddings in violation of the vendors’ religious beliefs, such as we have seen happen repeatedly to Christian bakers, photographers, florists and others. Presumably, President-elect Trump would also protect the rights of Christian colleges and universities to enforce their policies related to marriage, gender and sexuality, even while accepting students who take advantage of federal grants.
I believe we have reason to be cautiously optimistic about these opportunities and others. Most importantly, we must pray, faithfully and fervently, for those in authority, and we must hold those we have elected accountable to what they professed, proclaimed and yes, promised during the campaign on these important issues—and that’s all about their character.
There’s much more history to be written in the days ahead. We need to be part of making sure the history that’s written strengthens, preserves, and promotes God’s plan for marriage and family, the sanctity of human life and religious freedom.
This is Julaine Appling for Wisconsin Family Council reminding you the Prophet Hosea said, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.”