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BREAKING: Senate Will Vote to Ban Biden Employer Mandate

Sekulow Radio Show / Jay Sekulow & Jordan Sekulow
The Truth Network Radio
December 6, 2021 12:00 pm

BREAKING: Senate Will Vote to Ban Biden Employer Mandate

Sekulow Radio Show / Jay Sekulow & Jordan Sekulow

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December 6, 2021 12:00 pm

In breaking news, the Senate is set to vote on a bill barring the Biden federal vaccine mandate for employers - and it's likely to pass. Jay, Jordan, and the rest of the Sekulow team discuss this breaking news and more today on the broadcast.

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Breaking news, the US Senate will attempt to ban the Biden employer mandate this week. 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. Welcome to Sekulow. We are going to take your calls to 1-800-684-3110. We've got a couple of guests on this first half hour of the broadcast.

Second half hour we'll be able to get to more of your phone calls. This comes as there's some breaking news here. The Senate is set to vote on a bill barring the Biden federal vaccine mandate for employers and it's likely to pass. This is under a special rule that allows the Senate to operate through the Congressional Review Act where they can pass a resolution of disapproval that they don't support this mandate. And of course, ultimately, the House and the Senate can buy, now I think getting that through the House would be much more difficult, but the Senate doing it sends a clear message as well, that the funding to actually carry this out would be in jeopardy.

Because if Senator Manchin, who has a key vote on all these issues, all you need is one Democrat, if you've got the 50 Republicans, you can't fund, even if the courts, and for right now, this has been a loser for the Biden administration in federal court to say the least. Every appeal they've tried to make, every new motion they've tried to make on it, they've even lost now at the district court level when it comes to federal contractors, so it's a different case, but the CMS through the Medicaid services and Medicare services. So they're having a very tough time in court if Congress then piles on and says, we're not going to fund your implementation of this, which has been one of the big issues with the whole mandate for a lot of different employers. One of those employers is the Heritage Foundation.

We represent the Heritage Foundation. It's the first time they have been a party in a challenge, the actual petitioner themselves. They filed an amicus brief or two before the past. Their new President is going to be joining us live on the broadcast to discuss the case as well, why Heritage decided for the first time to take a stand.

And also the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Now, this is dealing with the OSHA, Occupational Safety and Health Administration's implementation of the mandate that President Biden put forward. The problem with that is constitutionally, it's not only suspect, but constitutionally, it doesn't work. I mean, OSHA said that themselves. I mean, the Occupational Safety Health Administration said they can't do it.

And then it came back and the Biden administration utilized OSHA to do this. It's unconstitutional because of issues that we raised, of federalism, of 10th Amendment issues. So again, if a state were to do it, that's a different story constitutionally. States could do that. I think the arguments against the state enforcing a mandate would be very difficult and very different.

The federal government doing it usurps the authorities of the states with general health and welfare applies to, is for the states. Now, we're saying that, and as you know, those on this broadcast know, we have been pro-vaccine. It's up to everybody's choice, but we've been very pro-vaccine and I've lost a family member to COVID.

And our friends at the Lamb family, Daystar just lost Marcus Lamb to COVID, who was also not vaccinated. I'm saying that because I don't want you to confuse the science issue with the legal issue. It's a separate legal issue.

We just think the mandate itself is unconstitutional. That's right. And we've got all of our briefings up at ACLJ.org or what we filed so far, which is really, this is the petition. And so that is up in my, and that's in our hands. We're going to be joined by Heritage Foundation. It's their new President too.

He just took over as the seventh new President of the Heritage Foundation. And the Sixth Circuit issued an order late Friday saying that the application of the mandate is staged still. So right now, as Jordan said, they are losing, the administration is pretty much losing in every portal, every jurisdiction they've tried, but now everything's consolidated to the Sixth Circuit.

That's right. So we come back. Why the Heritage Foundation decided for the first time to file this lawsuit, to take this stand and we'll be joined by their new President, Kevin Roberts as well.

So for those of you who know Heritage Foundation will know that again, they've got a brand new President, a seventh in their history. So he'll be joining us in the next segment of the broadcast as well. And we've got a lot to discuss today on the broadcast.

If you want to call us at 1-800-684-3110 and be part of the show, even in the second half hour, we're going to get into Russia and Ukraine. In the third segment, a little bit about, you know, the holidays. One of our good friends got a new book out tomorrow called Unleashing Peace by Jeremiah Johnson.

He's going to be in studio with us to talk about his new book. We'll be right back on Secular. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad. Whether it's defending religious freedom, protecting those who are persecuted for their faith, uncovering corruption in the Washington bureaucracy and fighting to protect life in the courts and in Congress, the ACLJ would not be able to do any of this without your support.

For that, we are grateful. Now there's an opportunity for you to help in a unique way. For a limited time, you can participate in the ACLJ's matching challenge. For every dollar you donate, it will be matched. A $10 gift becomes $20.

A $50 gift becomes $100. This is a critical time for the ACLJ. The work we do simply would not occur without your generous support.

Take part in our matching challenge today. You can make a difference in the work we do, protecting the constitutional and religious freedoms that are most important to you and your family. Give a gift today online at 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, 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.

Welcome back to secular. It is great to be joined by Kevin Roberts. He's Dr. Kevin Roberts. He is the new President of the Heritage Foundation. The Heritage Foundation, really the foremost conservative think tank when it comes to public policy in our country. It's an organization that ACLJ and our attorneys have worked with, our government affairs team have worked with. Been in this for a long time. Very closely.

I mean a long, long time. So Kevin, first let me say welcome to secular and congratulations on your new position. Well, thanks so much for that. It's a great privilege to be leading the Heritage Foundation and so early in my tenure working with you. ACLJ of course deserves a lot of those same kinds of celebration that you just mentioned regarding heritage. Kevin, I've worked with Heritage and your predecessors going all the way back, I mean way back when we started. We actually launched about the same time.

I think we were a couple of years after you all launched, but literally like a year or two. And so our history is very much intertwined and this of course takes it to a whole new level. I want to start with this, so Kevin, because you're just coming in as President. This is a very big and bold move that Heritage for the first time, I think it's a history, has actually filed a lawsuit. We are representing you of course, which we're honored to do, but for you to take that action, and I know this was one of your first actions as President, was a very big move. Well, it is and yet I think it's a hallmark of the Heritage Foundation. Certainly going to be a hallmark of my leadership that when it comes to looking at this administration, which has an unprecedented view of federal power, that the Heritage Foundation is going to stand up for itself, for our colleagues here, and also for the whole movement. I mean, I don't have to tell the two of you, you're the experts here, that what the Biden-Harris administration is doing is not only unconstitutional, it is an unprecedented abuse of federal power. And I want everyone listening, watching to know that every single day under my leadership at the Heritage Foundation, we will be on offense against federal overreach.

So, go ahead, Jordan. Well, that is key here because I think for our listeners to know the Heritage Foundation, one of your key, the key foundings of the group is the idea of federalism and the idea that the federal government has this power, but the states are really in the localities, municipalities are really where the power should be because they're closest to the people, they're the closest representatives to the people. And I think throughout the 48-year history of the Heritage Foundation, it has been trying to protect that careful balance that our founders intended, but that we see time and time again from administration, mostly those on the left, these attempts at federal power grabs that will be bigger than just a six-month employer mandate if they're allowed to get away with it. Well, that's exactly right, that obviously intrinsically regarding the vaccine mandate, it was important for us to take this unprecedented step for us and file a lawsuit for the first time in our history. But to your point, Jordan, what we're also signaling is that there are so many threats coming down the pike from this administration if we don't stop this one. In other words, this is not merely about a six-month vaccine mandate or even the permanent implementation of it, it is about a federal administration that is willing to subsume state power.

And by that, guys, even as a conservative, I'm happy that more liberal states like California or Connecticut are able to do the reforms or pass policies that the majority of their residents want. That's the point, that we've got to get back in this country, whether we're liberals or conservatives, to understanding proper federalism. I want people to be clear on that because the nature and scope of this challenge is really set that way.

The challenge here is not we don't like this or we don't like that, it's specific. It's the federal government here through the Occupational Safety and Health Administration of all entities who said they had no authority to do this and certainly doesn't have the wherewithal to do this, would be the vehicle that the Biden administration would choose to implement a policy, a directive, if you will, that is totally unconstitutional in its approach and with federal authorities, no federal authority here to do this. As you said, the states possess that healthcare authority.

And when I say healthcare authority, health and safety of the citizens is the primary function of state government. And the usurpation of that authority by the federal government is called overreach, which is exactly, as Jordan said, one of the founding principles for Heritage. But Kevin, I want to take it a little bit of a step further here because this is not just an important move by Heritage, but the fact that you've initiated, and we're honored, as I said, we are really honored to be representing Heritage and you all in this, and we've got a lot of friends at Heritage and have for decades. But for you to actually take action in court shows how much of an overreach this really is.

That's exactly right. I mean, you all know well that we have a lot of intellectual firepower here at Heritage in the form of the Mease Center, great lawyers, bright legal minds. Heritage has always been really active, one of the sources of heartbeat for the conservative legal movement. But we have never taken an action like this because we believe we are best served and we're best serving the movement and the country by being behind the scenes.

Let me just be really clear. I would much prefer that we didn't have to file this lawsuit. I didn't wake up one day and say, oh man, it's a great day to file a lawsuit against the federal government. What I recognized was, and my colleagues recognized, our board unanimously recognized, in spite of that history of not filing lawsuits, is that we had to take a stand for ourselves, for the sacred relationship we have with our employees and their private health information, and most of all, for the future of America.

That is not hyperbole, Jay, when I say that. The future of America depends upon the Heritage Foundation, the ACLJ, and by the way, we're honored that you all are our counsel, to take stands on behalf of the proper relationship between the federal government and states, as well as on behalf of all of those rights, that if we go back to the founding of this country, we know that our states, before the federal government, protect. You know, Kevin, one of the unique parts about the Heritage Foundation is the size, right?

Just for people to understand, one of the largest conservative organizations in the country, if not the largest. So you have a lot of employees, you talked about, you just talked about that, the relationship. I think that you're talking on this broadcast, there's a lot of people here where this would impact, and it would put you as the employer in, and as the President, in this bizarre position where you've got to have people monitoring, and you're starting to hold on to health records of employees, and you know, that's what we use, insurance companies and things like that. So that's not part of the employee, employer relationship so directly. It is, this is all, and also the penalties that come along with this from the federal level are really a draconian in nature.

They are, they're immense. And what I would like to believe, Jordan, is that someone who looks at our lawsuit, even if they're left of center, or even if they voted for President Biden and Vice President Harris, would recognize that our stance, our decision to file this lawsuit is not political, it's not partisan. For that matter, it's, yeah, I guess it's a policy decision, but ultimately it is about protecting a relationship that two humans have with one another, namely the employer and the employee. All of us, regardless of our political inclinations, ought to recognize that our federal government has gone too far when it wants to step in there and require employers like the Heritage Foundation to become agents of the state.

You know, one of the aspects of this I found interesting was you mentioned that the heft and depth of the, not only legal, but policy work that goes on at Heritage, but you also, in your work in Texas, have experienced what it's like on a grassroots level here. And as I said, I'm pro-vaccine, I've been very clear about that. I believe in the science, and I've even had my booster and I continue to advocate for that, but that's very different than the federal, and we put filtering systems in our offices, we're doing all the things you do to protect.

I think you all have done very similar things. But the fact here that the federal government, even when OSHA acknowledged him and they did not have the authority, and then they went ahead and politically compromised themselves because the President couldn't think of, the administration couldn't think of another entity to do it, and then they said, oh, we can do it. And of course, every court right now is turning them down, and I think that's what's going to happen here. But it shows you the overreach, and this is a core principle of why Heritage came into existence.

Well, that's exactly right. And what we're trying to do is for the future of America, protect important relationships, as I mentioned, between employer and employees. But to your point, Jay, about spending some time in the grassroots, as I know you and your colleagues at ACLJ have, my experience in Texas is very informative. I had the opportunity, the privilege to serve on Governor Abbott's task force to reopen Texas. And in the early days, my colleagues and I at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, as Heritage was doing here in DC, had the opportunity to remind people, make good choices, good health choices for yourself, for the common good. This is a lawsuit that is not at all anti-vaccine because we've been very encouraging of people to go make really positive health choices for themselves.

This is the point. When we step outside the nation's capital, even those of us who are now headquartered here, we know what Americans are telling us. And whether they're employees or employers, they want to make those decisions for themselves.

They do not want a draconian federal administration doing it for them. Kevin Roberts is the new President of the Heritage Foundation. As we said, we are honored to represent Heritage in this first effort by them to be the party in court. And Kevin, I want to thank you too and your team because this was a quick turnaround for two large organizations together. And we've got it filed.

We're in court. And it was great to have you today on the broadcast. We're honored to have you as counsel.

Thanks so much. Thank you, Kevin. And of course, folks, I don't think I have to tell you, but it's heritage.org to find out more. They're putting out a lot of great information too about their decision.

So it kind of works together. You go to aclj.org, you can find out about the actual legal briefing. But then at heritage.org, you'll see intertwined the ACLJ's work, but also that work of the Heritage team on the public policy side, and how far back that goes, this position, and really how entrenched it is at Heritage. So again, it's heritage.org. I'm really looking forward to working with Kevin and the good people at Heritage over the years ahead. I think this is a very bright future for Heritage. I'm very excited about this.

Yeah, we're about two blocks away from each other in Washington, Washington, DC. And I mean, again, our teams have been working together. So Kevin, appreciate it. Folks, we will be right back on Secular. 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. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad, whether it's defending religious freedom, protecting those who are persecuted for their faith, uncovering corruption in the Washington bureaucracy, and fighting to protect life in the courts and in Congress, the ACLJ would not be able to do any of this without your support.

For that, we are grateful. Now there's an opportunity for you to help in a unique way. For a limited time, you can participate in the ACLJ's matching challenge. For every dollar you donate, it will be matched. A $10 gift becomes $20.

A $50 gift becomes 100. This is a critical time for the ACLJ. The work we do simply would not occur without your generous support. Take part in our matching challenge today. You can make a difference in the work we do, protecting the constitutional and religious freedoms that are most important to you and your family.

Give a gift today online at ACLJ.org. I'm back here with Seth Gill, a good friend of ours. Jeremiah Johnson's in studio with us right now. He's got a brand new book out, his 10th book out, Unleashing Peace, Experiencing God Shalom in Your Pursuit of Happiness. The book is out tomorrow, wherever books are sold.

You can also go to ChristianThinkers.com to find out more because he's here with us because he's on a tour right now and he'll continue that tour on the book. I want to go right to this, Jeremiah, because this is a time of year and we're living in a couple of years where finding that peace that comes through God, to try to feel that, it can be difficult for people, even the people who are most faithful because they're inundated with pandemics and crisis and crises. But yet, they've also had to continue on. We've seen that because you had to push on, continue our work.

We just had the head of the Heritage Foundation because our work continues, though it's related to all of this. This is a tough time for people. It's probably a time where they need a book like this because holidays can be tough. When you add holidays plus a pandemic, it's that much tougher on people. That's such a great point, Jordan, and it's so true that as families, as fathers, I mean, you and I are fathers. I'm fathers of triplets, so they're five years old, which means I haven't slept in five years, Jordan, so that's just panic to begin with. But as it relates to what you're saying, there's been a 51% increase in inpatient hospitalizations among young people just this year. It turns out that panic is as contagious as any other pathogen, and the problem is we have way too many believers who want to live in truth, and instead of living in truth, they're living in panic.

They need to live in shalom. So my new book is going to show people unleashing peace, how to unleash peace in their family, in their lives, and it's something the secular family knows a lot about, but it's kind of a mysterious word to a lot of followers of Jesus. This whole word, shalom, it's so much more than a greeting, isn't it? Well, it is.

Of course, it means hello, goodbye, and peace, depending on the context. I wanted to ask you this, Jeremiah, and that is, when did you start writing this book? Was it before the pandemic or during it? That is the great question, Jay. I started writing this book. We've been asked thousands of questions at our organization, Christian Thinker Society. The number one question that I have been asked by Christians of all denominations here, Canada, and the United Kingdom is how we can respond to the mental health, the mental pain crisis.

That's my number one question. So I started writing it before the pandemic, and as God would have it, this book is emerging as we, Lord willing, hopefully emerge from this pandemic. The book, again, it's Unleashing Peace, and I'm holding my hands now for those who are watching, Experiencing God Shalom in Your Pursuit of Happiness.

It's going to be out wherever books are sold, so wherever you purchase your books, tomorrow, on Tuesday, and again, in places like Amazon as well, online. To learn about Jeremiah too, he's touring the country, you go to christianthinkers.com. It's not, again, denominational. As you pointed out, you speak to all denominations, but you really come from a theological background and an apologetics background. So walk people through, because the word itself, shalom or peace, it's used throughout the Bible, I think you said, 550 times, but it's translated different ways throughout the time. And on top of that, what's addressed too, the fact that I feel like people have, maybe during the pandemic, maybe because of how long it's lasted, but there was a time when people were talking about their mental health, and then it became something encouraged, and I think that's a good thing, because even in our churches, sometimes you can feel like that's kind of a taboo issue to talk about. Right. Christians don't gossip, they just share prayer requests, right?

I mean, that's a huge problem. And I think that ACLJ, in many ways, personifies this whole notion that we can live in peace, we can flourish, it's that Hebrew term, 550 times throughout scriptures, as you said, Jordan, we can live in peace, because when we live in peace, peace is always attached to Jesus Christ, who is truth. And so when we stand for truth, it doesn't mean that we don't fight our battles, but we can do so, we can fight any adversity with the peace, with the shalom of God. But we've got to get, like, I'm a thinker, our ministry is Christian Thinker Society, and by the way, I want everyone to know, our ministry would not exist. There's so many things ACLJ and the secular family does behind the scenes.

Jay Sekulow believed in me before I believed in myself, so I can't thank God enough for Jay Sekulow. Our ministry now is international, helping Christians think and believe and believe in thinking. It is Christian Thinker Society. We can't feel our way out of the problems that our culture is facing, we have to think our way out of these problems. I was going to ask you about, you know, because I remember the infancy days of the Christian Thinker Society, I remember you came to our office down the street before we moved to this great facility. What was the impetus for starting that?

I think because it ties into this book. Well, as people ask me that all the time, Jay, I became my ministry before I ever had one. I had so many holes in my own faith that I need to fill the gaps. And then I realized that Sunday morning wasn't enough, pastors need help, and we needed Christian thinkers in medicine, we needed Christian thinkers in law. And so I feel like our ministry is filling a unique gap because we're church-centric, but Jay, through your leadership and people like your mentorship in my life, I've learned how to sit at that intersection of both the scholarly and the popular world. And here's the deal about Christianity, we're up against total secularism right now.

That is our biggest competitor. And so Christians, if we're not thinkers, if we're not able to have a conversant faith, and right now the comment is shalom, we're not going to be successful sharing the greatest message, and that's the gospel piece. You know, one of the things I keep telling everybody, I've been doing this a long time, I've been practicing law for 40, this will be 42 years coming up, and our ACLJ and its predecessor organizations have been around for 35 years, but look, there's generational shifts that come. And one of the troubling things has been that most of the, I hate to say this because I represent a lot of them and they're friends of mine, a lot of the ministry's generational shifts have not been so great.

I'm not saying we pride ourselves on that, but I started thinking about that 10 years ago, which I think is how you do that. So seeing young people, when I say young people, because they're the same age as Jordan and Logan and my kids, taking the leadership of these issues and these organizations, I think is really great. I do wanna encourage people to also get the book. It's out tomorrow. So we all know how that works, because we've all done books.

So tomorrow's a really big day for Jeremiah here. So we wanna encourage people, Amazon and you got peace, but we wanna make sure that you also have some sales. So we wanna encourage people there. Christianthinkers.com to see, because you can also, people, if they wanna bring you to their church. Absolutely.

Conference, school. And again, it's not a denominational thing. It breaks through all of that. What will people learn if they buy this book?

They're gonna learn the immediate steps. They're gonna get past bumper sticker theology, past soundbite theology. We all need a plan for shalom in our life. Paul sums it up in Philippians 4, 8 and 32 words.

It's anchored by the word think, and he sums up how we can have a plan for shalom. All of us need it. We need it in our lives. We need it with God first, peace with God through Jesus Christ, but we need it in our families. And my book's gonna guide you by the hand, how to have peace and shalom right now, even in the midst of all the panic that's out there. Again, I'm gonna hold it up again so everybody can see what the book looks like.

So if you go online and there it is on our screen for people who are watching the broadcast. If you're listening though, again, unleashing peace, Jeremiah Johnston. And also again, if you go to christianthinkers.com, if you're someone listening to say, hey, I'd like to bring him to my church. Again, he's in studio with us because he was at a church yesterday. Final kind of question on this too is, I know we've kind of talked about it a little bit, but the idea here that peace doesn't mean you're just chilled out and not engaged.

Right, right. Paul in 2 Corinthians, the word trouble comes up 12 times. Jesus, John 16, in this world you're gonna have trouble. The first place that shalom really pops up in the Bible, Jordan, is in Judges chapter 6, Gideon.

You know, he's somewhere he probably shouldn't be. God shows up and he says, Lord, if you're with me, why are all these problems happening in my life? He actually interrupts the Lord and the Lord said, I will be with you. And he called that place in Judges 6 verse 24, the Lord is shalom. And here's the key, Jordan, and this is where I think ACLJ personifies shalom. He still had to go fight his battles, but he did so with the peace of God.

So the Lord is shalom and then he went and he fought the Midianites for truth. I want to encourage everybody, the book is called Unleashing Peace. I think we've got it up on the screen right now. Amazon, Barnes & Noble, wherever you buy your books, you can go to Christian Thinker Society's website, but buy this book, Unleashing Peace, Experiencing God's Shalom in Pursuit of Your Happiness, Jeremiah Johnson's book. Let me tell you, tomorrow is a big day for book sales.

Every time there's a Tuesday in a week, and that's every week, there's a book sale. And this is an important one, we want to encourage you to get it. But you know, I think a lot of our listeners right now, as Jeremiah was talking about, young people who are experiencing the mental health crisis, it's real, it's in our churches, in our communities, and I think that we could all benefit from more peace in our life and an understanding of how to get there as well. Jeremiah, I appreciate you being on with us.

I love you guys. The book is Unleashing Peace, Experiencing God's Shalom in Pursuit of Happiness. You can get your copy, pre-order it today, buy it tomorrow. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad. For a limited time, you can participate in the ACLJ's Matching Challenge. For every dollar you donate, it will be matched. A $10 gift becomes $20.

A $50 gift becomes 100. You can make a difference in the work we do, protecting the constitutional and religious freedoms that are most important to you and your family. Give a gift today online at ACLJ.org. Announcer Keeping you informed and engaged, now more than ever, this is Sekulow. And now your host, Jordan Sekulow.

Jordan Welcome back to Sekulow. So again, a good friend of ours who was just in the studio with us, Jeremiah Johnson, his new book is out tomorrow, but I encourage everybody, Unleashing Peace. We know it's a time, listen, if you're a supporter of the ACLJ, as you know, we've been same ACLJ throughout this pandemic at a time of crisis, but it's also, you know, it impacts people at a personal level and organizational levels. Yes, personal level, absolutely.

And it's not something you have to be ashamed about and you can talk about, but also if you're looking for kind of a plan, that's why I thought it'd be great to have him on this, especially this season, which puts a lot of stress on everyone with the holidays. When you add a pandemic in, it's that much more stress and one that's continued on. And it's impacting kids, it's impacting young people and families across the country. When people talk about that on radio shows and TV, you know that they're talking about real people who are experiencing kind of life-changing negative events.

And because there's a lot of it, it can be difficult to find where's the way out for everybody and how to kind of process all of the information every single day. But again, it's a good compliment to our work and what we were talking about with Kevin from Heritage Foundation, which is that the work continues and you've got to be able to adapt, but also to continue that battle. You know, one of the things we have Wes Smith here, I wanted to talk about just, we're going to be talking about the lawsuit that we filed. We're going to be talking about some international things, but what we just had on Jeremiah Johnson, the first half hour of the broadcast, his book is called, as Jordan said, Unleashing Peace. But you know, I was thinking about this as we were talking to Kevin with the Heritage Foundation about this lawsuit we filed against the mandate, but the angst level right now, and you're a pastor, is as high as I can ever remember it. People are on edge. They really, really, truly are on edge. It's like we're being robbed of our peace from so many different angles, on so many different levels. It's a tense time for all people. I think it's especially a tense time for people of faith. It truly is. Yeah.

So it's an interesting, you know, you put all of this together. I mean, Heritage Foundation never filed a lawsuit in their history. They filed one, which we're representing them on, against the mandate. That tells you something that, you know, and then they came out and they were in favor of the vaccine. I mean, they were... Yeah, they were the supporters of the Project Warp Speed and the idea that if you unleash... As a think tank though, if you unleash, which they're all about, unleashed corporate American, you take those bureaucratic restraints off, you can accomplish amazing things. And remember, there was the left at the time that said, no way, you'll never be able to get this done.

You can't really do this. This won't be in people's arms for years, if not a decade. And yet it was groups like Heritage who were saying, no, no, that's not the case. If you allow these companies, whether it's the Pfizer or the Moderna, I'm not trying to sponsor them, but to do their work and not have to get through all the red tape, because this is a unique situation. Look what our corporations and look what Americans can accomplish. That is what's so... I mean, I think, Andy, one of the takeaways in all of this over the last year and a half of dealing with this was the removal of the barriers resulted in a vaccine being created and other therapeutics in literally, as President Trump used to say, warp speed.

Warp speed, that's right. In other words, what I think President Trump did was show that you can amass the resources together in a free society with medical science and so forth, and do these things in a tremendously expedited fashion and expedited way. And Harry, that's kind of the way the American system was really designed to be. I think that is true, but I think there are some hiccups on the way in part because rather than persuading individuals, we have often decided to substitute authoritarianism, which then raises the level of resistance and distrust.

And I think that's... Although the rates of vaccine are high now, they're getting there, and the lines now they say are long because of this new variant, the truth of the matter is some of this does increase resistance, which I think is tragic for those people, including my own family, my own brother. And that's why the federal government, that's why Heritage decided to step into this battle, to say, listen, you start doing... First of all, if you do this, take out the vaccine part that gives a whole new power to the federal government under another one of their bureaucratic branches, this one OSHA, to start mandating and issuing mandates, not necessarily tied to anything, just you have to do it if you're an employer, or we fine you, which is not the way that usually federal governments had to operate, even with things like the speed limit. They've had to go back and forth with the states, tie it to some benefit the states received in this situation. And it's very different than your state, your locality, where you choose to live, making decisions at that level. So I encourage you to check out what we've already found.

It's only about four and a half pages. It's at ACLJ.org. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad, whether it's defending religious freedom, protecting those who are persecuted for their faith. I'm covering corruption in the Washington bureaucracy and fighting to protect life in the courts and in Congress. The ACLJ would not be able to do any of this without your support.

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Request your free copy of Mission Life today online at ACLJ.org slash gift. So I don't know, I want to make sure you know this. So the President, President Biden is going to be on the phone with President Putin Wednesday. And Rick Renell is going to be joining us tomorrow and Wednesday on this very issue because of course he's done a lot of work because of his being ambassador to Germany. A lot of these issues involving Russia relate right back to Germany and even more so now with the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. So we've seen this Russian troops amass on Ukraine's borders yet again. This happened under the Obama administration. It was Crimea.

It was annexed with little more than hands up in the air from the world and a condemnation. But yet that battle has continued on. Live firefights have continued on since the Obama years. And now Putin is amassing 175,000 troops basically surrounding Ukraine's land borders and has made a threat to the United States that I'm going in unless you sign an agreement, which I'm not even sure the President has the authority to do, but you'd have to sign an agreement that you will never allow Ukraine to become a member of NATO. Yes, he's trying to block the NATO alliance for extending to Ukraine.

So West, Colonel Smith, what does that mean for the rest of NATO and for the rest of the world? Well, Putin is a bully and he perceives this as his time to act. I don't think he really, really wants to invade Ukraine, although it's likely he will, but he wants to put leverage on the United States and on NATO to back off because we've expanded NATO since the fall of the Soviet Union. He wants that to stop. But not only that, he's not only calling for some written guarantee that we will not expand NATO as if the United States makes that call.

The NATO alliance, they vote on who joins NATO. It's not just up to the United States, but he wants that assurance because we're influential. But not only that, he also wants, also wants in writing from President Biden, that we will no longer do joint military exercises in Eastern Europe and that we will not do joint military exercises with Ukraine and Georgia as if President Putin gets to control the deployment of US forces.

But it is his attempt to bully. He perceives, I think this is the time to act for a couple of reasons. J1, he perceives Joe Biden this week. He looks at what happened in Afghanistan and he thinks he can get away with this. But also because of President Biden's tacit approval of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, Putin also realizes that he hasn't Europe over a barrel, that they need his gas and oil and he can cut it off at some point if we continue to go through with this.

The good news, if Biden would take advantage of it, is that the Nord Stream 2 pipeline is not a done deal yet. And we could yank our tacit approval of this and really punish Russia in that way. But in the meantime, Putin is a bully and he probably, unless he gets his way, will invade Ukraine. And here's the- Well, I mean, just think, let's stop there for a moment.

Okay. The ramifications of the Russian government authorizing their military, Andy, you were just in our European Center for Law and Justice offices, to authorize the invasion of Ukraine would be a monumental shift not only in government, but in threat. I mean, it would increase the angst level, I've said that a couple of times today, for the rest of Europe. Well, of course it does because, I mean, here's one sovereign state basically invading another sovereign state, which has been given autocephaly in terms of its church by the Ecumenical Patriarch, which means that the West has tacitly recognized the right of the Ukrainians not to be invaded, to have their own church separate from Moscow. This has angered Putin substantially as well. But think of the idea that the Russians are going to basically turn 175,000 troops on the Ukrainians. In addition, Jay, to the fact that there is basically a fifth column in the Ukraine of pro-Russian supporters who are going to be giving aid and comfort to that invasion plan if it ultimately occurs.

Yeah. It's not a clear cut line of like all Ukrainians are opposed to Russia and Russia. So there's also the idea that internally that you could put the pressure on the borders, you could also internally end up with a power change and you put a different leader in there who might be pro-Kremlin and it accomplishes effectively the same idea, or at least puts it on the path because then they could start coming up with agreements to limit their authority and then rejoin some kind of union with Russia. So people need to understand that there actually is, as you just mentioned, Jordan, there is within Ukraine a populace that is very pro-Russian because that's where they came from. That's their language.

A lot of it's their faith. So, Harry, you've got this unique external internal struggle going on here, which makes the whole Russia move even much more difficult globally. I think that is true. And so that provides a strong incentive for Mr. Putin to invade, or at least to threaten to invade. It's important to keep in mind that America faces an unprecedented low point in US and Russian relations. So the question really becomes, will the US pursue sanctions if Russia invades?

My view is as follows. Putin is looking for understanding in the domain of NATO, which actually means Putin is looking for Biden to cave. This bullying pattern in the face of fecklessness by the US authorities is consistent with the Obama-Biden approach, which concentrates on never giving up an opportunity to surrender in exchange for what?

A fig leaf. Again, it is something too, the idea that Ukraine was right on the edge of joining NATO, just to understand this retired Admiral, Biden number four. Ukraine is already in what's called a membership action plan, which is kind of a pre-step toward eventually gaining full membership in NATO.

So that train has left the station, if you will. What Putin is trying to do is scare the Ukrainians into essentially pulling back from that process, doing everything he can to intimidate them. And the dangers that we've talked about with Rick over and over again, the dangers of rewriting European borders, it can become, again, you can open that door and the door stays open and you've got all these different, and it can be ethnic, religious groups who have been able to live in peace since World War II to an exploit that we saw the fall of the Soviet Union. And now we're starting to see, I mean, this hasn't been like a cold conflict. This has been an active conflict since the Obama years.

Firefights have continued on. It's affecting people deep inside Ukraine, including in Kiev, and it's divided the nation. But it also then, you can look at other, these essentially former Soviet States, central European countries as well, that start saying, well, we want to divide this too.

We want to separate here out. And you could also start disrupting those who are already members of NATO and that entire alliance. Well, already Putin is doing just that. Belarus is having a conflict on the border with Poland, which used to be part of the Soviet bloc.

They now are a member of NATO. And so Putin is supporting Belarus because Belarus, because they objected to the EU sanctioning them because of their controversial, probably illegal Presidential election last year, they were actually flying in asylum seekers from the Middle East to Minsk and then encouraging to cross the border into Poland. So Putin is a part of that as well. And here's the interesting thing about Vladimir Putin. He seeks to be a destabilizing influence in Europe and he's succeeding at it.

He's already divided the US and part of like Germany on the gas and oil issue. But right now his foreign ministry office yesterday said that if they were to invade Ukraine, it would be defensive in nature, much like Hitler said when he invaded Poland in 1939, that somehow or another, Russia's not the threat. He says Ukraine's the threat. Well, it's interesting because I was just going to ask this, and that is, what is the impact of this kind of move on the rest of Europe, Andy? Because that is where you wonder that, because Putin is thinking this through. So what is the next play here? Well, that's the question.

What is the next play? Ukraine now, what's next? Romania? Are we going to restate the Warsaw Pact? Are we going to recapture the Poles? Are we going to go into Slovakia and the Czech Republic? This is the apprehension that people fear of an expansive Putin policy and the intimidation that General, that Admiral Stavridis spoke about. What is he going to do and what is the United States going to do in response? So he's doing everything he can to intimidate the Ukrainians and I think he may be succeeding in that intimidation.

Well, we come back for the break. This is one point. I mean, I think it's a careful point for the United States because we know there are other countries, especially China, who want to be the world's leader. They want to say, you know, this is the superpower of the world. But still, at this moment, it's not France, it's not even Ukraine itself because the divisions inside, it's not Germany, it's not the EU, even combined, it is up to the US. Putin, his only final concern is what the US might do.

Now, on a positive note, that underscores our power and standing in the world still to this day. But with each time you draw red lines and don't stand up for it and you don't really talk to the American people about what's going on there and so you're not, people are not fully understand why they should care, why this impacts the US. Of course, that NATO right there. The difference between a NATO with Ukraine on the border of Russia and a strong, independent Ukraine and or a Russia expanding its territory, getting closer and closer into NATO. I mean, that's what you're talking about. There's also the idea here of President Biden said that he could stop this and there are ways to do it, but he hasn't laid out what any of those ways are.

And I don't know if it's Nord Stream 2, but you get a lot of pushback from Europe. So we'll talk about all that when we come back for the break. Support our work at 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. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad. Whether it's defending religious freedom, protecting those who are persecuted for their faith, uncovering corruption in the Washington bureaucracy, and fighting to protect life in the courts and in Congress, the ACLJ would not be able to do any of this without your support.

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Give a gift today online at ACLJ.org. Alright, so welcome back to Seqology. As we were finishing out that segment, what I was keying in on is that it's still up to the U.S. to call it the pressure point. It doesn't mean you can solve every problem, but what potentially could the U.S. do outside of a war with Russia, which is not happening.

It's not going to be U.S. troops fighting Russian troops. So what other measures are in place? Now, the first one on everyone's list is the pipeline.

Nord Stream 2. It's been divisive in Congress, members of Congress. Ted Cruz has spoken out a lot about that.

We've talked about a lot of this broadcast because Rick Renell was the former ambassador to Germany before he was at DNI. That unique role is that we're not hearing much out of Western Europe, and that's because they've made financial deals with the Russians, so they don't want to get involved. Again, they might say they don't support it, this idea. They don't like the idea of the invasion of Ukraine, but it's whether or not even the NATO would be able to act unilaterally, even though it should be able to.

But Wes, you have put together kind of points for people, because I think that's always important when you talk about these issues with this phone call that's going to be happening on Wednesday, and we're going to get into this more. But there are things, there is power at President Biden's disposal he could utilize that would deter or at least try and deter Putin's aggression. And I think if Putin thought that President Biden were serious, it would deter him, because there are things like, of course, the Nord Stream pipeline. We could go back and oppose that again.

It's not completed yet. If we would free up our own energy resources in the United States, we could sell Europe gas and oil ourselves. But not only that, right now we have sanctions against some of the oligarchs in Russia because of the invasion of Crimea. Sanction Russia completely. Remove Russia. We held this threat over Turkey when Pastor Bronson was being held, and that is remove Russia from the international financial banking system, which we can actually do that. It would cripple Russia's economy. It would cripple Putin's personal wealth. But that's the kind of thing we can do in addition to the pipeline. We could also, you know, expedite Ukraine's request to be a part of NATO. Instead of backing away, which Putin is demanding our troops on the eastern part of Europe, put more U.S. troops and other allied troops in eastern Europe. We can take a strong stand. It would get Putin's attention, but you have to be frank. You have to be in his face. And I am not sure that President Biden has the will to do that, but there are actions we can take that would seriously cripple Putin, and he knows that if we would do it.

One of the unique things about the American Center for Law and Justice and our global affiliates is we're able to give you this kind of analysis in depth on something that's going to impact everybody if this happens. And I just asked Harry Hutchinson, Professor Hutchinson, during the break, what is Putin's goal here? What's the motive? What's he trying to do here? So, Harry, I want you to really respond on that.

Well, thanks, Jay. I think Putin's long-term objective is to crack up NATO and then to destroy the European community. And I think now is an ideal time to advance that agenda.

Why? Because we have an administration that has demonstrated its lack of will, its unwillingness to exercise power to advance U.S. interests, its unwillingness to impose sanctions, its unwillingness to send more troops to NATO. And so if you combine that with the Afghanistan disaster, the withdrawal, the fact that there are still Americans being held essentially captive in Afghanistan, if you combine that also with our response to Chinese aggression, I think if I were an advisor to Putin and he has this particular objective in mind, this could be a fantastic time to move forward. Yeah, which would be dangerous, I think, since it's a very dangerous precedent. But I got to explain something to you.

I'm going to have Andy do this. Ukraine is very unique. And, you know, separation of church and state does not exist there. So the fact is there are loyalists within Ukraine to Moscow. We've said that before. So you have to understand the complicated nature of this history.

That's exactly right, Jay. And if you look at the history, the Rus, the Russians, were Christianized in the year 988 by apostles and missionaries sent from Constantinople, Cyril and Methodius, to where? They sent them to Kiev in what is now the Ukraine. And Prince Vladimir was looking for a faith for his people, and he decided on orthodoxy instead of Catholicism. And he sent contingents of people to eat both Constantinople and Rome. And Rome and Constantinople impressed him rather more than Rome. And they came to Kiev in the Ukraine and baptized his people in mass baptisms. So Putin's got a historical argument for the legitimacy of saying Ukraine is the heart of Russia and our Christianity. And that's the argument that he is pushing.

And believe me, we may not see that or understand that in the United States, but it's so very much a part of this. But how dangerous, Wes, quickly, is this move of Putin's with the world saying don't do it, and he does it anyways, if he does? Danger to him? Danger to the rest of the world? Well, yeah, it could be very destabilizing to the world, but unfortunately, probably not as destabilizing as we might wish it would be for the whole situation or would not happen because Putin is banking on the fact that if he does this, that there will be no action by the Western world. And what would really, really make this more complicated is somehow there's a coordination between China and Russia, so that at the same time that Putin invades Ukraine, China invades Taiwan. And meanwhile, Iran is getting ready to have a nuclear weapon. I mean, the world is on the brink of some unprecedented unrest and threat. And so to answer your question, Jay, yeah, it would add to the threat we already face, both from Taiwan's aggression and from Iran. Yeah, I think this is a major story. And the deal is this, that we've heard from Tony Blinken, our Secretary of State, this is what he said, I think this underscores what we were talking about with Wes, we were talking about with Harry, we were talking about with Andy, the idea of what what's on the option, the table for President Biden, other than US military action, which is not really on the table.

Take listen by 25. We've made it clear to the Kremlin that we will respond resolutely, including with a range of high impact economic measures that we've refrained from using in the past. I think that's what we've been talking about is the idea that if if you draw the line and say, if you do this, we will remove you from US banking, US can do that unilaterally, we don't need the world, world might be upset about that, because there are other interests, but you have to be willing to do it.

Because we saw it at a much smaller scale. President Obama drawing the line in the sand, red line in Syria with chemical weapons, and then being unwilling to act on that, not taking a step when they were used. And then these dictators or authoritarians say, okay, you know, these threats, they're meaningless threats.

They're just to talk to their own audience. They're not going to really do that to us. Part of what Biden needs to make clear is that we have not only the capability to punish Russia, if they do this, he must convince Putin that he also has the willingness to punish Russia. And that's the key question. Yeah, and I don't, you know, Harry, really quick here with less than a minute to go, is that possible? I think that's a difficult sell.

And so I think it's important to distinguish between first order effects and second order effects. So if the United States responds with economic sanctions on Russia, then the question becomes, what will Putin do next? And I think he would be prepared to hold Europe hostage to a very cold winter by shutting off gas. And Andy, you were just at our Europe you know, so it belongs to us in Strasbourg. You said it's not getting the attention that it probably needs to be getting.

It needs to be getting a lot more attention, but they're more interested in talking about the French sending over migrants too, from Dunkirk into the cliffs of Dover, and whether or not the Belarus and the Poles migrant situation should be clarified rather than a shift in the balance of power in Europe. Yep. All right, folks, we're going to be again covering this extensively with Rick Rinnell because President Biden, President Putin, they're going to be speaking Wednesday. So we'll get into this again in the impact we'll have. Support our work. It's a matching challenge month of December, double the impact your donation at ACLJ.org.

We'll talk to you tomorrow. At the American Center for Law and Justice, we're engaged in critical issues at home and abroad. For a limited time, you can participate in the ACLJ's matching challenge. For every dollar you donate, it will be matched. A $10 gift becomes $20. A $50 gift becomes 100. You can make a difference in the work we do, protecting the constitutional and religious freedoms that are most important to you and your family. Give a gift today online at ACLJ.org.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-07-13 09:24:55 / 2023-07-13 09:49:27 / 25

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