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National Church Leaders Demand Schumer Apology

New York Senator’s Comments Offensive and Dangerous

Contact: Dane Rose, 202-546-8329 ext. 106; Rev. Rob Schenck, 703-447-7686 cell, both of the National Clergy Council

WASHINGTON, July 19 /Christian Newswire/ -- The executive committee of the National Clergy Council, representing church leaders from Catholic, Evangelical, Orthodox and Protestant traditions, today calls on New York senator Charles Schumer to immediately apologize for his bigoted comments made yesterday on the floor of the US Senate.

Mr. Schumer referred to traditional Christians who object to the willful destruction of human embryos as “theocrats” who “want their faith to dictate what the government does.” He then said this is why the Founders “put down their plows and took up muskets to fight.”

National Clergy Council president, the Rev. Rob Schenck, said in response:

“Senator Charles Schumer’s remarks were not just insulting to tens of millions of Americans of traditional Christian faith, but his words were down right menacing. For a US Senator to vilify a whole segment of the American population based on their religious convictions and then suggest fighting them with guns is frightening.

We appeal to Mr. Schumer to apologize immediately, set the record straight and urge Americans to engage in civil and non-violent debate on these matters.”

Senator Schumer was the only US Senator to refuse an Easter / Passover gift package from the National Clergy Council’s affiliate group, Faith and Action, that was hand-delivered to all congressional offices earlier this year. The Senator sent back the package of two books and a personal letter from Rev. Schenck. Schumer included his own letter noting that he was not accepting the gift. In contrast, numerous senators sent personal notes of appreciation to Faith and Action.

Mr. Schenck is an appointed missionary to the federal government, a minister and a board member of the Evangelical Church Alliance, America’s oldest association of Evangelical clergy. He is available for further comment.