Mike Pence COS Marc Short: Religious Affiliation ‘Now Under Scrutiny and Persecution’

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Just minutes before opening statements at Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearings, the chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence and the president of faith advocacy organization Catholic Vote warned against potential Democrat anti-Catholic bias.

Marc Short, chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence, said during a press call that, as Pence makes campaign stops this week, he and his staff will remain focused on “a trend where the scales have been tipped in our justice system that religious affiliation is now under scrutiny and persecution.”

Short reflected on the vice presidential debate last week, during which Pence confronted Democrat Sen. Kamala Harris (CA) with her questions attacking U.S. District Court nominee Brian C. Buescher for his membership in Catholic charitable organization the Knights of Columbus.

Additionally, Short observed Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s (D-CA) questioning of Barrett three years ago about whether her Catholic faith would disqualify her from carrying out her duties to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

“The dogma lives loudly within you,” Feinstein said. “And that’s of concern when you come to big issues that large numbers of people have fought for for years in this country.”

Short said the Democrat Party that “nominated and elected JFK to the presidency … now seems to target our nominees for affiliation, and particularly for their participation in groups like the Knights of Columbus.”

Pence, his chief of staff said, will reflect in his remarks on Monday the Trump administration’s “record in protecting religious freedom.”

Brian Burch, president of Catholic Vote, recalled remarks made by Harris and her colleagues to Buescher regarding his membership in the Knights of Columbus:

So here are a few of the questions posed by Sen. Harris and our colleagues … to now Judge Buescher:

If confirmed, would you set aside the entirety of your moral fabric when you issue rulings? If confirmed would you recuse yourself from all cases in which the Knights of Columbus has taken a position? And lastly, if these views are not your views, what steps have you taken to make clear that you do not hold these views?

“Questions about the Knights of Columbus are questions about Christianity itself,” Burch said. “The kinds of questions posed by Sen. Harris and her colleagues were not unique to the Knights of Columbus or some fringe organization. And they are representative of a deep and growing animus toward believing Christians within the Democratic Party.”

“A person’s religious faith should bear no role in determining whether they are fit to serve as a Supreme Court judge,” Burch stated.

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