5 Things to Know About President Trump's Religious Freedom Executive Order
On Thursday, President Donald Trump signed an executive order promoting religious freedom, weakening the Johnson amendment, and providing relief for religious objectors to Obamacare's preventive services mandate. He signed the order on the National Day of Prayer.
The order is Trump's first step toward keeping his campaign promises on religious freedom, and it already has drawn harsh criticism from Democrats and LGBT groups. The ACLU is expected to sue the administration over it.
Here are five things to know about the order — what it does do, and what it doesn't.
1. Declare the importance of religious liberty.
In a document outlining the order, the White House listed three objectives, and the first was to declare "that it is the policy of the administration to protect and vigorously promote religious liberty."
"We will not allow people of faith to be targeted, bullied, or silenced anymore," President Trump declared in his remarks while signing the order. "And we will never, ever stand for religious discrimination. Never, ever."
The president added, "America has a rich tradition of social change beginning in our pews and our pulpits. We must never infringe on the noble tradition of change from the church and progress from the pew."
"America has a rich tradition of social change beginning in our pews and our pulpits," Trump said in front of an audience of religious leaders. "We must never infringe on the noble tradition of change from the church and progress from the pew."
For this reason, Trump's order did not stop at declaring support for religious liberty.