Biden’s New Rule Would Limit Christians From Adoption; GOP Rep Jim Banks Is Fighting Back With New Legislation | Eastern North Carolina Now

GOP Rep. Jim Banks (IN) has unveiled a new bill that would cut off federal funding for child welfare agencies who discriminate against Christians and other people of faith.

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    Publisher's Note: This post appears here courtesy of the The Daily Wire. The author of this post is Amanda Prestigiacomo.

    GOP Rep. Jim Banks (IN) has unveiled a new bill that would cut off federal funding for child welfare agencies who discriminate against Christians and other people of faith.

    Banks' bill, the Sensible Adoption for Every (SAFE) Home Act, is a response to a proposed Biden administration Health and Human Services rule that would require foster or adoptive parents to support a child's gender "transition." The caretakers would have to affirm a child's preferred pronouns, their "chosen name," and "allow the child to dress in a way that reflects that gender identity."

    "The Biden administration is cruelly preventing countless children in the foster care and adoption system from going to loving homes just because parents are opposed to irreversible sex change procedures on kids," Banks said. "This isn't a liberal or conservative issue. This is just plain wrong, and every sane person knows it."

    The administration claims the HHS rule is necessary to protect "LGBTQI+ youth," who they say are overrepresented in the foster care system and often suffer from abuse.

    However, 18 state attorneys general have already signed on to a letter from Alabama AG Steve Marshall urging HHS to reject the proposed rule. These Republican states - which include Georgia, Virginia, Texas, Tennessee, and Kentucky - all see the rule as discriminatory and a clear violation of the First Amendment, both freedom of religion and freedom of speech. Their letter argues that the rule would effectively remove faith-based providers who refuse to bend on their religious beliefs from the foster care system.

    The letter notes that the Supreme Court, just two years ago, ruled in favor of religious freedom in Fulton v. City of Philadelphia. In this case, the city refused to contract with a Catholic group that wouldn't certify same-sex couples as foster parents. The city was told they couldn't discriminate against these Catholic groups based on LGBT opinions.

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    The Republican AGs also argue in their letter that the HHS rule would hurt children in foster care the most, since Christians in particular, and people of faith more generally, are far more likely to become foster parents than the general population. Notably, there are already nearly 400,000 minors in the foster care system, and that number is expected to grow in the coming years.

    The GOP AGs also claim the administration is trying to skirt legal precedent by applying most of its requirements on the states, instead of individual providers. For example, religious parents or groups could, in theory, decline to be designated as a "safe" placement for LGBT youth if they aren't willing to agree to the HHS LGBT regulations, and as a result, would not receive those placements. This would cut them out of a huge portion of the foster care system, Republicans say, adding that this is still discriminatory and unconstitutional.

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