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URGENT: ACLJ Prepares for Battle

Sekulow Radio Show / Jay Sekulow & Jordan Sekulow
The Truth Network Radio
October 25, 2021 1:00 pm

URGENT: ACLJ Prepares for Battle

Sekulow Radio Show / Jay Sekulow & Jordan Sekulow

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October 25, 2021 1:00 pm

On November 1st and December 1st the U.S. Supreme Court will be hearing the two biggest abortion cases in decades. November 1st they will hear the Texas abortion law case. On December 1st they will hear a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade - this case is out of Mississippi. Jordan and the rest of the Sekulow team discuss these two vital cases and what the ACLJ legal team is doing directly in court to support life and challenge abortion. We're also joined by ACLJ Senior Advisor for National Security and Foreign Policy Ric Grenell.

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Today on Sekulow, it's urgent as the ACLJ prepares to fight for life at the U.S. Supreme Court. Keeping you informed and engaged, now more than ever, this is Sekulow. We want to hear from you. Share and post your comments or call 1-800-684-3110.

And now your host, Jordan Sekulow. Remember, if you're listening to the broadcast on Friday, the breaking news out of the Supreme Court that day, and we were talking about what the ACLJ would be doing, but now a better idea for you. So this is a very urgent week. It's going to be an urgent five weeks because on November 1st, the U.S. Supreme Court is going to hear on the merits the case out of Texas involving not just their six-week abortion ban, but also a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade put forward by the state of Texas. And you've got, remember, this is a unique case, different than the case that the court will be hearing on December 1st. So we're going to have November 1st and December 1st, the two biggest abortion cases on the merits at the U.S. Supreme Court in decades, decades.

So first will be Texas. What's the ACLJ doing? Well, Friday the Supreme Court set a very quick deadline for briefing. We have until Wednesday to file our brief. We will be doing that as the Americans Center for Law and Justice, so you will be represented in this Texas case. It is an urgently scheduled case.

It is not following the normal path because, again, it was back, forth. Remember, a couple of times that law in Texas has been upheld, and you had the abortion industry try to file against it. Then you had the Department of Justice come in.

When the Department of Justice came in, everything shifted. So what I think it's clear for everybody here is we have until just Wednesday this week to file. So our ACLJ legal team is very busy.

C.C. Howell is going to be joining us from that team to discuss what we're working on right now as we speak. I've got actually portions of the brief with me on the broadcast today, a lot of it looking on the Texas case on procedural matters. Remember, they had issues with who to sue even in Texas because the state is not enforcing this. It's not a criminal penalty.

It's a civil penalty enforced by the citizens who would then bring private rights of action in courts. It's a very unique case, but it's also going to include a direct challenge. Texas is going to include a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade. Logan, we're going to take people's calls on this. I mean, this is going to be a very busy month because, again, it's the actual argument.

We'll be on Monday, just a week from today. And then a month later, December 1st, you've got the case out of Mississippi, another major challenge, direct challenge to Roe v. Wade and C.C. Yeah, and there's so much happening on this front. I'm curious. I know a lot of you are watching right now.

We did this last week as well. I want to know where you are on this issue. I know it's a little bit nuanced.

I know it's specifically obviously on life. A lot of you have your specific feelings on the life topic. If you're on either side, honestly, we'd love to hear from you. Love to hear your point of view when it comes to this specific Supreme Court case and even how the courts have sort of gone ahead and rushed this fairly aggressively. So I want to hear from you, your thoughts. Is this an issue that is still resonating with you as someone who is listening right now on maybe on Christian radio or some of you who are watching right now on Facebook who maybe found us because of political talk over the last couple of years?

Maybe you're not as familiar with some of our more faith-based work that we do. I want to hear from you. Give us a call. 1-800-684-3110.

Is this still an issue that is important to you? Phone lines are open. There are six lines open, which means this is a perfect time to call.

Again, at 1-800-684-3110. We'll do our best to get as many of you on the air as possible. We're obviously joined by our esteemed panel here, and Rick Rinnell is joining us later in the show, Jordan.

Yeah, that's right. So we've got a lot to talk about, and again with Cece joining us too to get into this issue, but we do want to hear from you on the air. 1-800-684-3110. We want you to be part of the discussion today. That's 1-800-684-3110. We'll be able to take calls really quickly today on the broadcast to start to keep the discussion going so it gets 1-800-684-3110. As always, let me encourage you.

Go to ACLJ.org. Stay updated on all of these issues. I know Rick Rinnell will be joining us the second half hour of the broadcast to discuss another issue, not getting enough attention, but one we follow closely. It's out of Sudan. There was a military coup there, another overthrow of a government there. But this time, again, a serious trouble for potential democratic and non-military leadership in Sudan and what that means for the region and also South Sudan, which is predominantly Christian.

We'll talk about all of that today. The challenges facing Americans are substantial. At a time when our values, our freedoms, our constitutional rights are under attack, it's more important than ever to stand with the American Center for Law and Justice. For decades now, the ACLJ has been on the front lines protecting your freedoms, defending your rights in courts, in Congress, and in the public arena. And we have an exceptional track record of success.

But here's the bottom line. We could not do our work without your support. We remain committed to protecting your religious and constitutional freedoms.

That remains our top priority, especially now during these challenging times. The American Center for Law and Justice is on your side. If you're already a member, thank you. And if you're not, well, this is the perfect time to stand with us at ACLJ.org, where you can learn more about our life-changing work.

Become a member today. ACLJ.org. Only when a society can agree that the most vulnerable and voiceless deserve to be protected is there any hope for that culture to survive. And that's exactly what you are saying when you stand with the American Center for Law and Justice to defend the right to life. We've created a free, powerful publication offering a panoramic view of the ACLJ's battle for the unborn.

It's called Mission Life. It will show you how you are personally impacting the pro-life battle through your support. And the publication includes a look at all major ACLJ pro-life cases, how we're fighting for the rights of pro-life activists, the ramifications of Roe v. Wade 40 years later, play on parenthood's role in the abortion industry, and what Obamacare means to the pro-life movement. Discover the many ways your membership with the ACLJ is empowering the right to life. Request your free copy of Mission Life today online at ACLJ.org slash gift.

Welcome back to Secular. We are taking your phone calls to 1-800-684-3110 as we're getting those ready and our team is here. Let me go right to C.C. Howell, a senior counselor with the ACLJ, because C.C., I want to focus, you know, so we've got these big dates. November 1st, Monday, just a week from today, the court will be hearing oral arguments on this Texas law. It's a novel approach when we all looked at this to not, again, to have this enforcement of the six-week abortion ban be done by, not state, but by private actors and private rights of action. So it's caused a lot of issues for the abortion industry, C.C., and also even the Department of Justice about whether or not the court has jurisdiction here, if there's federal jurisdiction, if that's even ripe at this moment, or would it ever be. And then a second, of course, is the issue that this will be another case that puts Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey in its crosshairs. So now we're having both, on November 1st, oral arguments on the case that's doing that, and then again, December 1st, the case out of Mississippi. Yeah, so it's an interesting time for the abortion question in our country, for sure, because like you said, we have an oral argument in the Texas to both of those cases, the one that came from the DOJ and the one that came from abortion providers. We'll be heard next Monday, and then the Dobbs case will be heard December 1st. So we are engaged in both of those cases. We are supporting, with the Texas case, we are filing an amicus brief supporting Texas, stating that federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction and pointing out that these cases are not properly before the Supreme Court to decide at this time. You know, I want to go right to Harry Hutchinson. We'll get to some phone calls, Logan. Harry, when we look at the specific to the Texas case, we've got to file our brief Wednesday.

Our team is just, I've gotten snippets of it already, of kind of our core, but there's a lot. I don't want to overdo it for people, because they are going to put Roe v. Wade at issue. But in this case, uniquely, there's a big procedural question about whether the court should even be hearing this case. And the Supreme Court takes those questions very seriously. A lot of their cases get decided on procedural grounds.

I think you're precisely correct. And so if you look at the abortion issue, if you look at the background, there have been a number of dissenting statements by justices of the Supreme Court who argue that we have crafted a special rule with respect to abortion cases in providing plaintiffs with standing, for instance, to bring their cases in federal courts. I would argue, and I think that will be consistent with the brief that we will file with the Supreme Court, that federal courts lack jurisdiction to hear pre-enforcement challenges to privately enforceable laws. So keep in mind, in the Texas case, the law is enforceable by private plaintiffs. It's not enforceable by the state.

It's not enforceable by a prosecutor. And so what the plaintiffs are doing here, that is basically the abortion providers, they're claiming the right to bring a lawsuit on behalf of women, let's say, third party beneficiaries of the litigation, in Texas, before any abortions have been blocked. And I think the Supreme Court should reject this creative effort by the abortion providers in Texas, number one.

Number two, the Supreme Court should restore sanity to this entire abortion arena, and basically re-establish jurisdictional and standing requirements as a predicate to bringing such litigation in the future. You know, Logan, a lot of phone calls, 1-800-684-3110, if you want to talk to us on air, let's get to one of those calls. Yeah, let's get to the phone calls. And if you are calling, know you have some patience and let them get to your call, because it may ring for a while, just give it a minute there, 1-800-684-3110, because so many of you have been calling. Let's go to Jerry, who's calling online, too.

Jerry in Illinois, you're on the air. Hi, Pro-Life still resonates with me. I've gone to every March for Life in D.C. The first one I went to was in 1983, and I haven't missed one since.

That's amazing. Your office right there on Capitol Hill, it's at 2nd and Maryland right there, that's where a lot of the March for Life, every year we're usually on the broadcast, so we participate in a lot of events for the March for Life organizers, because it's a multi-day event that culminates in the march. But that's the commitment, Logan, and people like Jerry that are out there who have been leading on this before anyone wanted to talk about abortion, before your church wanted to say anything about it, unless you're Catholic, you probably didn't talk about this in church in 1983 when he started going. It was really the late 80s, early 90s, when it became a big issue, and that's why I thought it was important to take his call as well, to show people this isn't a new issue. A lot of people have been born, and that's why I even posed the question of, is it still important to you, because it's also disheartening when you've had 30 years now, plus 30, 40 years of back and forth, but really not a whole lot of movement in terms of, there's been a lot of movement on science and technology, and a lot of hearts and minds have been changed, but legally, this is really the first time in a very long time there's been something substantial.

That's right. I mean, Andy, that's the whole point here, is that we have a five-week period of time where it's going to be fresh on those justices' minds. It's not twice to challenge both cases, which I think is huge, by the way. Both cases are challenging the constitutionality of Roe v. Wade and whether or not the court got their reasoning wrong, which, by the way, as you know, Andy, people on the left who support abortion have said for years that the actual reasoning behind the case was inaccurate.

Well, you're absolutely correct, Jordan. This is a very important time in the judicial history of the United States right now and in the history of what's going to happen to the abortion industry, and I emphasize an industry, because that's what it is. It's just an industry, and the Supreme Court of the United States now has two cases before it. In the next five weeks are going to be incredibly important times for us in the United States right now in terms of the issue of life. And the question, I think, that ultimately is going to be decided one way or the other, whether it comes out of the Mississippi case or whether it comes out of the Texas case, I think in the crosshairs of the Supreme Court is going to be the continued viability of Roe v. Wade that was decided in 1973, a case in which the Supreme Court made up out of whole cloth that doesn't exist a federal constitutional right to an abortion. I defy anybody to show me in the Constitution where there is a federal constitutional right to abortion.

The answer is there is not. These are matters that are left to the states, and I think we are at that point with the composition of the court as it is right now, with the issues that are being raised both by the Texas case and by the case out of Mississippi, that Roe v. Wade is going to be, I hope, on the chopping block, and that's what I pray for. You know, CC, this is the key, is that both of these cases, they decided in Texas, I know we're doing our brief as well, not to give too much of that away, not a surprise, but we're going to see two direct challenges that the courts agreed to here. So there have been people trying to challenge Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the follow-up case, for over 30 years to get a merits case there that the court has to consider, and now we have two within exactly one month of each other. Yeah, so that makes me hopeful that this abortion issue and the judicially fabricated law that was created in Roe v. Wade giving a judicially fabricated right to abortion, that that will finally be attacked, and hopefully we will have a Supreme Court that follows the Constitution and states that there is no constitutional right to abortion.

Just like Andy said, you cannot find that in the Constitution, and the Supreme Court needs to correct the wrong decision in Roe v. Wade and make it clear that there is no constitutional right to abortion. As we come back, we're going to continue to take more of your phone calls at 1-800-684-3110. I encourage you to share this broadcast with your friends and family, because this may have gotten missed by a lot of people on Friday.

It happened, I think, in our last segment of the show, maybe the segment before it, that the court, one, scheduled briefing and then scheduled oral arguments. So I just want to underscore for everybody out there, this is why the ACLJ, the size of the ACLJ, the resources available to us, when we got an order like that Friday, it wasn't like, oh, we've got to panic and figure out who's going to do what. We put the team in place, they are ready to go to file briefs at the U.S. Supreme Court in five days. And we're able to do that because of your support for the ACLJ, those who support us financially, when you share our broadcast, when more people see what we're doing, all of that is important. When you call in to be part of the broadcast at 1-800-684-3110, when you sign a petition, it's important for us at the ACLJ.

So I encourage you to go to ACLJ.org, that's ACLJ.org, stay up to speed on everything that we're doing. Keep calling as well. Next time we'll take more of your phone calls at 1-800-684-3110.

That's 1-800-684-3110 to talk to us on the air. And again, we are going to shift to some other topics in the second half hour, but I want to spend time here because this is an important time in history, it's an important moment to have these two cases. We don't know how they will be decided, but to have these two cases both coming up within one month exactly of each other, and the justices focused on this issue. Music We're here to defend the right to life. We've created a free, powerful publication offering a panoramic view of the ACLJ's battle for the unborn.

It's called Mission Life. It will show you how you are personally impacting the pro-life battle through your support. And the publication includes a look at all major ACLJ pro-life cases, how we're fighting for the rights of pro-life activists, the ramifications of Roe v. Wade 40 years later, Planned Parenthood's role in the abortion industry, and what Obamacare means to the pro-life movement. Discover the many ways your membership with the ACLJ is empowering the right to life.

Request your free copy of Mission Life today online at ACLJ.org slash gift. The challenges facing Americans are substantial. At a time when our values, our freedoms, our constitutional rights are under attack, it's more important than ever to stand with the American Center for Law and Justice. For decades now, the ACLJ has been on the front lines protecting your freedoms, defending your rights in courts, in Congress, and in the public arena.

And we have an exceptional track record of success. But here's the bottom line, we could not do our work without your support. We remain committed to protecting your religious and constitutional freedoms.

That remains our top priority, especially now during these challenging times. The American Center for Law and Justice is on your side. If you're already a member, thank you. And if you're not, well, this is the perfect time to stand with us at ACLJ.org, where you can learn more about our life changing work. Become a member today, ACLJ.org. Welcome back to Secular. We are taking your phone calls at 1-800-684-3110.

That's 1-800-684-3110. Let me go back to CC on this. CC, there will be a lot of talk. And this, I mean, there has been leading up to this. And you see it in the dissent that we saw from Justice Sotomayor, who is pro-abortion and believes this is the worst of the worst that's been done in Texas.

You know, the parade of horribles is being already paraded out. We talked about court packing, all these issues. But there's going to be a lot of talk about women's rights and the idea that this is impacting women's rights. But what we know is that nationally, that is just not, it's not like women are 100% behind these efforts to keep abortion legal up until birth, which is what these pro-abortion states have.

Yeah, and as a woman, I would absolutely agree with you. I, as a woman, do not support abortion. I believe that a baby has a right to life.

That is guaranteed under our Constitution. So, this is an issue where they always try to spin it. You hear Planned Parenthood and pro-abortion people always talking about a woman's access to reproductive health. They don't want to talk about the fact that it is actually killing a baby. And so, you know, the Supreme Court has stated that states have a compelling interest in protecting a baby's life.

What's really the question is, when will that interest become compelling? Is it at a heartbeat? Is that at conception?

Is that at 15 weeks? You know, and that's the issue I think that the court is going to have to address. But it's an issue that should be something that the states get to decide when they get to protect a baby's life. Yeah, I mean, this is, again, I want to go to the phones, Logan, 1-800-684-3110, but I just think that we're going to see a mass amount of, so much pressure will be on these justices. But right now, the time for right now is to get ready for the battle, get the briefing ready, and now know that you're not going to have one, but two, starting on Monday, just a week from today, two major cases challenging Roe vs. Wade on the merits at the U.S. Supreme Court. Well, it's been a constant discussion of whether this has been a politicization of the court, and whether they can actually vote, how they feel like it, or are they going to have so much pressure from whichever side to not vote, necessarily, the way they feel. So it should be pretty interesting. Which side is going to be?

The one with the pressure. Right, and it's the pressure, listen, you may hear this before you go to the phones, it's the pressure from the left, it's a political issue pressure, and from an industry. So it's like, what we saw from Chuck Schumer on the courts with Kavanaugh and Gorsuch and all that, I feel like we're going to see that again, they may play a little differently, a little more carefully, but usually they can't. And with the lead-up like this to it, but you know, you see, we see that time and time again, the pressure put on these justices, but I think that what we have to remind through our briefing is that, one, they shouldn't care about the political pressure, and two, they should care about the sound reasoning and the Constitution itself, their job to put aside. But we know on this issue, it's probably the highest pressure on the justices, the most high pressure decisions they have to make. That's right, and you know, Supreme Court justices aren't elected in hopes to keep them out of the political fray. But unfortunately, in the world in which we live today, politics reign supreme, and you absolutely have the pro-abortion side pushing and using the power that they have, they support Democratic candidates financially, and they control them, and they will keep pushing the narrative of just the abortion policy instead of encouraging the Supreme Court justices to follow the Constitution, which is what they are supposed to do, and have a sound opinion based on the Constitution and law, and not some judicially fabricated right that they did in Roe v. Wade.

So I hope that they do have, the justices do have the courage of their convictions to stand up for what's right and the Constitution, and that these cases will finally be decided correctly. All right, well, let's go straight to the phones. Let's go to Chris in Maryland on Line 1. Thanks for holding, Chris. You're on the air, and if you want to be on the air, 1-800-684-3110. Chris, welcome. Thank you, Jay.

I just have more of a comment. You know, this has been going on since Roe v. Wade, as you all point out. There's over 500 million babies that have been killed. We need to stand up for these babies' rights. Well, listen, I think that's the whole point of these cases, is that, you know, we fundamentally believe that when these constitutional rights are granted, and listen, you can look at this from the faith aspect, that when the moment of conception is that, when life begins, you can have these discussions. We also know where science can lead us now, and what science shows us, and what science is able to make known. And a lot of these laws, you know, we're working on out of South Dakota, is about informed consent. It's about letting people know, listen, this is what we can show you now.

It doesn't look like a blob. It looks like a baby, and it looks like a human being, and that this is a life that deserves the same kind of protection as a life outside of the womb. It's not to take away a women's right, because you're protecting many, and especially when we look at these sex-selective abortions, and people say, well, I don't want another girl, I want a boy, or this. You're also, a lot of times, protecting women.

And internationally, that's a huge problem. I think one of the issues, too, people kind of have in the more conservative Christian side of this, which is almost an all-or-nothing approach, it's something you can't really have when it comes to these issues. You have to have things like a heartbeat bill, or you have to have the South Dakota laws, because inevitably, that does save lives, saves children.

So, though it may not be the end goal for you, it is important to make those little steps, baby steps if you will, to ensure there is more protection for life. And like you said, not just from a religious point of view, or from a Christian point of view, but now from a scientific point of view, those steps can be made, and those arguments can be had. It's no longer a theoretical concept, it's now science, and I think that is in a different place than we were 30 years ago, or 40 years ago, in the life discussion. I know many of my friends, who are definitely to the left on this issue, will still now at least give up the argument of, is it a life, is it not a life?

That's no longer the discussion where it was 30 or 40 years ago, that was kind of the talking point. Now, in the last decade, we've seen so much improvement, and so much change in technology, that the Christian argument should still be made, but it's not the only argument, there are plenty of atheists who are pro-life at this point. Right, right, you don't just have to have faith that this is life. And science, and faith together, and I think that, listen, everyone understood, I think that anybody who's been through a pregnancy, whether you're a man who's been going through it with your wife, or you've seen a family member, or you're a woman who has gone through it yourself, everything changes, your whole idea of this changes, it becomes even more clear. But again, like Logan's saying, you don't have to do that to understand that this is a life that we should protect in the United States of America, when we have these constitutionally protected rights. You know, Andy, that's where it starts, we should protect the unborn. So I think the faith community has done a great job of getting us to that point, pre where we did have the kind of technology now that we do. You're right, Jordan, the unborn do have the right to protection under the Constitution, just as much as those who are born and standing outside the womb.

Why should we not give them those rights, and see that they have their constitutional rights protected as well? Let's just say what the abortion industry is. In point of fact, the abortion industry as it has evolved and developed in the United States today is an industry of death. Yes it is. And we've got to turn, we've got to call it what it is, and say what it is. But we know that they worship at that altar. It is a big business for the abortion industry, as we call it.

And this is, you talk to people in politics, you can't cross-play a parenthood if you're on the Democrat side of the aisle. We'll be right back. For decades now, the ACLJ has been on the front lines, protecting your freedoms, defending your rights, in courts, in Congress, and in the public arena. The American Center for Law and Justice is on your side. If you're already a member, thank you. And if you're not, well this is the perfect time to stand with us at ACLJ.org, where you can learn more about our life-changing work. Become a member today.

ACLJ.org. Keeping you informed and engaged, now more than ever, this is Sekulow. And now your host, Jordan Sekulow. And welcome back to Sekulow.

We are taking your phone calls, 1-800-684-3110. Rick Grinnell is going to be joining us in the next segment of the broadcast. We're going to be talking about some world news, as we like to do on this broadcast, keep you up to speed on what's going on. It may not be making headlines in our news in the U.S., but this news out of Sudan, so we will get to that with Rick.

Always great to have him on live with us. And we'll get to your phone calls as well. What we are working on at the ACLJ, this is a critical time. And I go to Harry on this because, Harry, this is very unique to have the Supreme Court, just on Friday, announce that they are going to have oral arguments in the Texas six-week abortion ban. That is the private right of action that is not enforced by the state next Monday, November 1st. And then December 1st, which we already knew about, is the case out of Mississippi, which is the heartbeat case, 15-week abortion ban. So we've got a month where there's going to be so much attention, but also attention by the justices. They're going to not have one, but two different bites at the apple of Roe vs. Wade.

I think you're precisely correct. So over the next several weeks, we will see, or should see, very important developments at the United States Supreme Court. On one level, the issue will be jurisdictional. Do the plaintiffs, the abortion providers, have standing, for instance, to challenge the Texas law? With the Dobbs case, the Mississippi case, the key question is the core question, which is a merits decision on the viability of Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey. I think if the Supreme Court has the courage, has the spine, they will overturn Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey. So if you look, for instance, at the language embedded within Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the court said that each one of us has a right to our own individuated idea of the universe and the cosmos. Well, that's clearly untrue. We don't have that right.

We decide what is true in community and in communication with other individuals. So I think the Supreme Court clearly went too far in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, and they also went too far in Roe v. Wade. And that would then return, if they reverse both cases, the abortion issue to the states, and then the states could decide that's where these issues should in fact be decided. And so hopefully the Supreme Court is prepared to stiffen its spine and do the right thing. Yeah. I mean, this is, again, Andy, this is opportunity.

It's a unique opportunity. I never want to overplace to our audience that this is going to be the end because it is a long-term battle. We're ready for the long-term battle, but it's changing. The fact that these cases are making it on the merits shows it's a direct relation to the fact that the court has changed also.

Oh, yeah. I think President Trump has changed the tenor of the court. There's no doubt about it. We had a strong President who had strong ideas, who was a conservative in his judicial philosophy, who put judicial philosophers and the hard judges on the court, who shared his temperament judicially, who were textualists, who read the Constitution, who said this is the document that's before us. Let's look at it.

Let's find out what it says. That's what we live with, with and under in this country and in the Constitution. We have a separation of powers between the states and the central government, and the decision to make decisions that are to be made with respect to life and death issues in abortion are those committed, in my view, to the states.

Why? Because the Constitution of the United States does not give any federal right to an abortion. It is something that is left to the states, and we need to look at the Constitution and these new justices, notwithstanding Senator Schumer calling them out on the steps of the Supreme Court by name and saying we're going to get you.

Notwithstanding that, they need to stand up for what's right and what's constitutional. All right, folks, we come back. We're going to continue to take your phone calls, too, so we've got a full broadcast coming up, a full half hour coming up. But Rick Riddell is going to be joining us as well. We're going to get into Sudan and what has happened there overnight and how it affects the United States and also the funding for the new government that was existed in South Sudan.

We'll be right back. The challenges facing Americans are substantial at a time when our values, our freedoms, our constitutional rights are under attack. It's more important than ever to stand with the American Center for Law and Justice. For decades now, the ACLJ has been on the front lines protecting your freedoms, defending your rights in courts, in Congress and in the public arena. And we have an exceptional track record of success.

But here's the bottom line. We could not do our work without your support. We remain committed to protecting your religious and constitutional freedoms.

That remains our top priority, especially now during these challenging times. The American Center for Law and Justice is on your side. If you're already a member, thank you. And if you're not, well, this is the perfect time to stand with us at ACLJ.org, where you can learn more about our life changing work.

Become a member today. ACLJ.org. Only when a society can agree that the most vulnerable and voiceless deserve to be protected is there any hope for that culture to survive. And that's exactly what you are saying when you stand with the American Center for Law and Justice to defend the right to life. We've created a free powerful publication offering a panoramic view of the ACLJ's battle for the unborn.

It's called Mission Life. It will show you how you are personally impacting the pro-life battle through your support. And the publication includes a look at all major ACLJ pro-life cases, how we're fighting for the rights of pro-life activists, the ramifications of Roe v. Wade 40 years later, a play on parenthood's role in the abortion industry, and what Obamacare means to the pro-life movement. Discover the many ways your membership with the ACLJ is empowering the right to life. Request your free copy of Mission Life today online at ACLJ.org slash gift. Welcome back to Secular. We're joined now by Rick Rinnell, our senior advisor for foreign affairs, national security.

Rick, overnight, this is something I picked up. I'm glad to have you on today about this because unfortunately it doesn't get as much attention here in the United States and we like bringing these issues to our audience who are well informed about what's going on in the world. So overnight in Sudan, which had overthrown Bashir, awarded war criminal for just horrendous actions over his leadership, including of course what happened in Darfur, but there was more to that. So things were looking positive there. They were looking like they were going to make new relationships with the world, kind of reengage the world if you will, and had an interim government in place.

The civilian-led government was about to take full control and the military has come back in again and a coup has happened. But explain to people again where things were in Sudan because it was looking up for the relationship between the US and that used to be the home of Osama bin Laden. Jordan, add Sudan to the very long list of countries that have been directly impacted by the lack of leadership of Joe Biden.

And we can't say this more clearly. How many times are we talking about different crisis situations? We've moved from Afghanistan, China, Taiwan, Ukraine, the Balkans, which we've talked about here a number of times, and now we have Sudan. And look, Americans should really care about this because there are four peacekeeping operations via the UN in Africa alone. There are 12 peacekeeping operations total, but four of them are in Africa that are over a billion dollars each. And what that means is the 1.5 billion dollars spent in Sudan means that the American taxpayer pays 420 million dollars a year to directly impact a stable Sudan. And the leaders at the UN, the leaders at the State Department right now, the Biden administration, are failing us. They're giving words again. Here we have a coup, a military coup in Sudan, and the most we can get from the State Department is strong words of they're troubled and this is unacceptable.

And that's just not good enough. What we've seen in the Trump administration is that when you have crises like this, the United States has to exercise power. If we don't exercise diplomatic power and leadership, then it ultimately means we've got to send boots on the ground if it becomes one of those situations where the country allows terrorists to have a safe haven and the programs begin, the WMD programs or terrorist programs begin to take hold. So this is the reason why we should care is because we've got situations spiraling out of control because of the lack of leadership from the Biden team. And I'm not sure that this is going to end here in Sudan. We're going to have problems around the world.

And, you know, I'm already looking at the situation in Venezuela as yet another situation that's spiraling out of control because we don't have U.S. leadership. Yeah, I mean, I've been to Sudan, South Sudan. When they were on their road to independence, we were working with them and their government there. You know, they've had a tough enough time on their own. That was a country that was in constant war, predominantly Christian, with Sudan, with the North, and sought and received independence and that recognition by the United Nations and the world. But they've had a tough time. But then there was that glimmer of hope, more than a glimmer. When Bashir was overthrown, like you said, Rick, you know, the U.N. came right in with $1.5 billion.

They're there. They shouldn't have been caught off guard by this military coup. And like you said, it takes something that was, again, it was a major positive step to get rid of Bashir and move forward that way. And kind of eradicate the terrorism, eradicate the problem so that they, you know, they've got oil, they want to reengage the world. And, you know, they were in talks, I think, about like the Abraham Accords, too.

So this is a huge step back. But like you said, it's not, it's also the U.S., this could be, pose a direct threat to Americans. Yeah, it's such a good point and a reminder of how far we've come in Sudan. I was there at the U.N. when we first started this issue. We closed certain peacekeeping operations. The name UNMISS probably doesn't mean much to people, but it's the U.N. mission in Sudan was originally closed because we made progress. We were able to bring stability to Sudan.

And now what we're seeing is because of a lack of leadership over the last eight months. And by the way, many countries are clamoring to have U.S. diplomatic help or U.S. action in some sort. And this doesn't mean boots on the ground, but it means diplomatic action.

And they're not getting that action. And so for Sudan, that means stability and the progress, as you point out, they were very close to having an Abraham Accord. And now what we see is a military coup. The government has collapsed. There is chaos in the streets.

People are in fear again. And we've seen this over and over in Sudan. It means we're wasting a lot of money because we don't have U.S. leadership. And that saddens me and it points to a whole bunch of countries around the world that are going to be in the same situation. Seizing on the moments like when Bashir was overthrown or when these countries were willing to make peace with Israel and work on economic relationships. You've done it with Kosovo and Serbia, these Muslim-Christian divides that were starting to break down, especially in the Gulf States. And then in North Africa, we were starting to see a breakdown of some of those divides and the way of kind of lumping them all together as well.

They're anti-Israel and though some would work with the United States, they'll never work directly with a place like Israel. To have that happen in a country the size of Sudan, it's a huge step back. It's not necessarily an easy correction now that a military coup… And so the words are, like you said, the U.N. says it's unacceptable and the Biden administration's representative to the horde of Africa said it's deeply alarmed. But to get back to where they just were a few days ago with a civilian government, not a military government, that is no easy task at this point.

Look, it only takes one moment to really dial back a ton of progress that we've been making. And by the way, I'll add we need to be watching Mali in the northern part of Africa because the French are signaling that they need help from the United States. Leadership, diplomatic help when it comes to Mali. We've seen now the Russians taking over in the Middle East because of the Biden vacuum of leadership. I talk about this in a piece on ACLJ.org.

If you want to get a little bit more, you can go to ACLJ.org and look at that piece. We see our allies like Saudi Arabia going inside Iraq to have conversations with Iran. And so this is all spelling disaster when the Biden team is nowhere to be found. Countries look for other leaders. Russia's stepping in. I fear what's going to happen in Sudan now. And again, I can't emphasize enough, there are a number of countries to follow. If the Biden administration doesn't step up and try to pay attention around the world, we're going to see chaos come even closer to home. Final question for you, Rick, and this leadership vacuum. I saw, again, it's like they're still just getting ambassadors chosen from major countries.

I think China was one of them and Japan might have been another country. Just to go through the hearing process, which can be tough, especially the divided U.S. Senate. But this idea, again, it's like we're not engaged with the world and we were ultra-engaged during the Trump administration. What I've heard before is that there's a difference between a threat of military action and a credible threat of military action. When our friends and allies and others recognize that the U.S. is unpredictable, that's a good thing. When they know that everything is predictable under Joe Biden, they know exactly what's going to happen, which is maybe a couple of tough words and a couple of tough statements, but no action. Then they start making their plans accordingly.

With Donald Trump, they didn't have that luxury. They were nervous about what he would do. There was a credible threat of military action and there was a thought, we don't know what this guy's going to do and so we better just stay still. That means America is safer when there is a credible threat of military action.

As always, Rick, great to have you on the broadcast. Check out Rick's piece up at aclj.org on Russia about this leadership, about credibility. Ultimately, that's what this is all about. You see a country like Sudan fall, you have to remember what Sudan was the symbol of. It was the pre-Afghanistan Afghanistan when it came to safe haven for terrorists. Now, ultimately, those were no longer places that were safe havens for people like Osama bin Laden to go deeper into the hills.

The leadership didn't change there. It was still Bashir who had committed genocide against people in Darfur. I don't know if more people might remember that.

I know it's a reference. When a country like this had a positive moment and you flood it with all the UN support, like Rick said, 28% of that is coming from our pocketbooks in the US, you don't just let it go. You seize that moment and you make sure that government is successful. We've seen this in Afghanistan. Now we're seeing it in Sudan. Both places that can quickly become, overnight, safe haven for radical Islamic terrorist groups yet again. An issue we don't want to have to face globally where we feel like we've actually defeated it.

Now it's coming back. Only when a society can agree that the most vulnerable and voiceless deserve to be protected is there any hope for that culture to survive. And that's exactly what you are saying when you stand with the American Center for Law and Justice to defend the right to life. We've created a free, powerful publication offering a panoramic view of the ACLJ's battle for the unborn.

It's called Mission Life. It will show you how you are personally impacting the pro-life battle through your support. And the publication includes a look at all major ACLJ pro-life cases, how we're fighting for the rights of pro-life activists, the ramifications of Roe v. Wade 40 years later, the play on parenthood's role in the abortion industry, and what Obamacare means to the pro-life movement. Discover the many ways your membership with the ACLJ is empowering the right to life.

Request your free copy of Mission Life today online at ACLJ.org slash gift. The challenges facing Americans are substantial. At a time when our values, our freedoms, our constitutional rights are under attack, it's more important than ever to stand with the American Center for Law and Justice. For decades now, the ACLJ has been on the front lines protecting your freedoms, defending your rights, in courts, in Congress, and in the public arena. And we have an exceptional track record of success.

But here's the bottom line. We could not do our work without your support. We remain committed to protecting your religious and constitutional freedoms.

That remains our top priority, especially now during these challenging times. The American Center for Law and Justice is on your side. If you're already a member, thank you. And if you're not, well, this is the perfect time to stand with us at ACLJ.org, where you can learn more about our life-changing work.

Become a member today. ACLJ.org. The issue that is obviously very dear to us are the life cases. We're going to be talking about that, obviously. We've got the briefs due Wednesday. First oral argument on Monday, November 1st. Second major case will be on December 1st. That's the Dobbs case out of Mississippi. Two direct challenges to Roe v. Wade.

So we're going to be all over that. But we do a lot of work on Christian persecution. And while we do some high-profile cases because they involve Americans, most of this persecution occurs in-country against people who live in that country.

And a lot of times, that's in countries either without freedom of religion or that do not favor Christianity, so like the Islamic world. We have an office in Pakistan, and I always want to remind people about that office. What that office primarily does is handle criminal cases. Criminal cases for Christians because they are accused of violating laws like the blasphemy laws, which are on the books in Pakistan.

I want to play for you. This is Shaheri Argil, who oversees our office in Pakistan and a lot more at the ACLJ. But he did an intervention to the UN on one of our specific cases there.

I've talked about it before. It involves an individual, again, wrongfully accused of blasphemy. Their whole life is turned upside down. Imprisoned for years in horrible conditions. And there's a lot of pressure on the judiciary there to convict people because if they don't, then they end up dead. So you've got these really horrible laws that then lead to horrible outcomes.

And so you've got to fight hard, which our team does, but you also have to really push the judicial system there to do what they know is right. Because they are putting themselves in so much risk in these cases because of the populations being more radical often than the governments. That is the case, I think, in a place like Pakistan. But I want you to take a listen or watch, if you're watching, to see the amount of times we are utilizing our ability to intervene at the UN, this time on the behalf of a persecuted Christian in Pakistan. Thank you for this opportunity to speak with you today on an important topic of blasphemy, the laws in Pakistan, and particularly a blasphemy case that needs immediate international intervention. I am counsel with the European Center for Law and Justice. Ten years ago, the ECLJ started an affiliate office in Pakistan that provides free legal representation in cases of religious persecution.

The office has provided legal assistance in over 100 cases. I am here today to plead with you to intervene on behalf of a young Christian man falsely accused of blasphemy. The blasphemy laws were enacted in 1980s to protect Islam. Instead of protecting Islam, these laws have caused grave violations of human rights. Innocent people have spent years in prison.

Angry mobs have attacked Christian neighborhoods, burned down homes, and killed innocent people. I am here today to ask you to urge Pakistan to release Shahzad Masih, who was falsely accused of committing blasphemy. In this case, the prosecution's allegations do not constitute blasphemy, under even the broadest interpretation of the law. Trial courts in Pakistan are known to pass the buck to the High Court. It is well known that trial courts often convict those accused of blasphemy.

Usually because of pressure from angry mobs. Sentencing an innocent person to death for fear of angry mob is not how a state should act. Members of the Parliament, an innocent young man has spent more than four years in prison and is now facing the risk of being convicted and sentenced to death by a trial court for something that is not a crime, even under the law, that itself is contrary to international human rights norms. Members of the Parliament, this is a perfect case for your intervention.

We implore you to take a closer look at it. We request you to ask the Pakistani authorities to release him. And we have gotten response from the European Union already to what Shahraar did. I want you to hear that because Shahraar is from Pakistan. He's a US trade attorney, an American. He, again, oversees that office in Pakistan. I just want you to understand that he worked through those blasphemy laws. But he also, again, reiterated the problem is that the courts make decisions based off mob rule.

And listen, it's very real. These judges end up dead, killed, murdered, assassinated for their position. So do regional leaders.

Cabinet members have been over cases like a sea of Ibis. But still, you have to stand up for what is right. These states should safeguard their judges if they need extra security. But oftentimes, if social security has turned on them before in those cases in Pakistan, very difficult.

But the ACLJ is there. Shahzad doesn't have to fight that by himself. And the EU has now responded. So the European Union, where Shahraar was presenting that, the President of the Intergroup on Christians in the Middle East issued a motion for resolution in Shahzad's case specifically, asking Pakistan to end the prosecution, to stop the prosecution. There's another European Union motion for resolution on Pakistan and on this specific case, this specific case currently being discussed in the Intergroup on freedom of religion. I believe in tolerance.

There'll be a blog up later this week. Logan, this to me, this underscores this core worth of ACLJ. Individual like Shahzad, Christians, let me just kind of run through. Christians in Pakistan are usually economically in tough situations. Many of them decided to choose Pakistan over India because of the caste system when those countries split apart.

And before India, quote unquote, did away with the caste system, they thought it would be better for them in Pakistan. And for many decades it was, but then radical Islam came along, which changed places like Pakistan and made it a place where it was very dangerous, it still is, to be a Christian and very difficult to get justice. This is someone who should not even be in prison and has been in prison for four years. But he's not alone because of us. Absolutely. I think there is that scope of the ACLJ that maybe you don't hear and see on radio each and every day in our video productions, each and every day in our social media posts. Because a lot of times this show covers, you know, the news of the day, what's happening right now and how we're involved.

It seems like we are always involved and what's going on. But there is such a worldwide broad scope. I know, Andy, you're going soon to our European offices. These people need to understand it's not just this insulated, isolated, you know, we do this in America and it's for, you know, we're not just commentating with the news, we are helping people worldwide.

That's true, Jordan. And I'm very heavily involved with the European Center for Law and Justice, which we have centered in our headquarters in Europe in Strasbourg. We have, of course, offices in other parts of the world. But Strasbourg, where the European Court of Human Rights sits, is where we have these actions taking place. We intervene in the United Nations.

By that intervention means we're a non-governmental organization. We have the right to be heard on issues of constitutional civil proportions, rights, abortion, the right against eugenic abortions, which is condemned in the European countries much more than in the United States, championing the rights of Christians and those who are persecuted throughout the world from our office in Strasbourg. And we do a lot of work in Europe, and that's very important for people to know. We don't just do work in the United States, we do work in Europe, which is centered out of our European Center for Law and Justice in Strasbourg. All right, folks, broadcast, I think, you know, again, we're going to stay on top of the case at the Supreme Court, two cases, one Monday, and obviously the briefing due Wednesday, so that'll be available.

You'll be able to see the ACLJ's filing of that. Rick's new piece up that we talked about just briefly last week, that's up at ACLJ.org, a piece on Pakistan. Again, we do all this just so you understand the scope of the work. You know, a team putting together that brief on the Supreme Court this new Wednesday we found out about on Friday, standing with Shahzad in Pakistan, so he's not alone and has representation. We're doing all of this at the ACLJ through our international affiliates, and it's because of your support of our work at the ACLJ, which we appreciate so much. We'll talk to you tomorrow. Thank you. And if you're not, well, this is the perfect time to stand with us at ACLJ.org, where you can learn more about our life changing work. Become a member today, ACLJ.org.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-07-31 09:51:00 / 2023-07-31 10:13:23 / 22

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