Christian Coalition of America

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The Christian Coalition of America (CC), founded in 1989 by Rev. Pat Robertson, claims to be "the largest and most active conservative grassroots political organization in America ... [offering] people of faith the vehicle to be actively involved in shaping their government - from the County Courthouse to the halls of Congress."[1]

The Christian Coalition says that it is "a coalition of pro-family Roman Catholics, evangelicals, and other people of faith working together to become the unified voice of families in America." The organization says that it has "well over a million supporters and 1,500 local chapters in all 50 states. During the 2000 elections [it] passed out 70 million voter guides. Several million of those guides were printed in Spanish." [2]

The CC's president is Roberta Combs, who "has strategically relocated its National Headquarters to Washington, DC, ... [to] further enhance" the organization's "effectiveness in supporting the pro-family agenda." [3]

Contract with the American Family

In May 1995, the Christian Coalition's "Contract with the American Family", which was "the brainchild of TV religionist" Pat Robertson, was "introduced with much fanfare" for consideration by Congress. [4]

David Kuo, who was later to become Special Assistant to President George W. Bush and Deputy Director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, as a "top adviser to the coalition's main political strategist", "helped draft the coalition's manifesto" which "argues that the nation should 'abolish all major federal welfare programs' and turn them over to 'private and religious organizations'," NPR's Daniel Zwerdling reported on the October 10, 2003, edition of PBS's "NOW with Bill Moyers".

The Contract offered ten provisions [5]:

  1. Restoring Religious Equality ("Religious Equality Amendment")
  2. Returning Education Control to the Local Level ("Transfer funding of the federal Department of Education to families and local school boards.")
  3. Promoting School Choice
  4. Protecting Parental Rights (Passage of "Enactment of a Parental Rights Act and defeat of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child.")
  5. Family-Friendly Tax Relief ("Reduce the tax burden on the American family, eliminate the marriage penalty, and pass the Mothers and Homemakers' Rights Act.")
  6. Restoring Respect for Human Life
  7. Encouraging Support of Private Charities
  8. Restricting Pornography
  9. Privatizing the Arts ("The National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and Legal Services Corporation should become voluntary organizations funded through private contributions.") This included the Legal Services Corporation (LSC), a "federally chartered corporation established to provide legal assistance to the poor."
  10. Crime Victim Restitution (Note: restitution to victims was the least of concerns; the Contract, in essence, called for more work and less play for prisoners.)

In his June 1995 analysis of the "Contract", Steve Watkins concluded in Christian Ethics Today that the Coalition's "concept of what Christianity represents actually takes the form of advocacy for the privileged and powerful as over against the underprivileged and powerless! They seem to hold that certain groups possess the right, yes, the responsibility, to enforce certain ideologies as the only means of true expression in a democratic society."

Also see Ralph Reed, "Contract With the American Family: A Bold Plan," Ballantine Books (June 1, 1995), ISBN 0345402537 (paperback).


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