According to recent news reports, the Trump administration has instructed U.S. delegates to the United Nations to replace the term “sexual reproductive health” with those like “reproduction and the related health services” and the word “gender” with “woman” in documents and negotiations. These reports (and a resulting letter from members of Congress) stem from “leaked” State Department memos and warn that striking these terms will damage U.S.-foreign relations, hinder access to health care, oppress women’s rights, and “define transgender people out of existence.” These reports are at best misinformed about U.S. development aid and foreign relations and at worst sounding yet another false alarm to continue Obama’s legacy of “progressive” social ideology in U.S. foreign policy.
The following is a statement made by Mrs. Beverly LaHaye, Concerned Women for America’s Founder and Chairwoman; Penny Nance, CWA’s CEO and President; and CWA’s board members, Jean Crisp, Janne Myrdal, Ann Hettinger, Lori Scheck, Terri Johannessen, Betty Jane Strong, Cheryl Keithly, Angel Voggenreiter, and Jon Whetsell:
“Concerned Women for America (CWA), the largest public policy organization for women in the country, calls on Congress to break through political pride and work together to secure our borders with appropriate and effective means and fix our broken immigration laws.
“As a sovereign nation, it is the duty and right of the U.S. to secure our borders and protect our people. Groups who have encouraged mass and disorganized migration to our borders are manipulating and exploiting vulnerable people for political gain and unduly burden our U.S. Border Patrol. During the journey, almost 1 in 3 women have been sexually abused and many have fallen prey to violence or human trafficking.
“Both parties acknowledge the system must be fixed, and President Trump is more than willing to take on this difficult task. The status quo is hurting both citizens and immigrants. It’s time to stop the political games and work for the good of the country.”
For an interview with Penny Nance, contact Annabelle Rutledge at [email protected] or 916-792-3973.
Quick — somebody please remind Democratic Senators Kamala Harris (D-California) and Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) that they’re members of what’s supposed to be the tolerant party. Based on the bigoted questions they recently posed to a judicial nominee, they may think that Democrats are the heirs of the anti-Catholic Know-Nothing party.
Sens. Harris and Hirono challenged federal judicial nominee Brian Buescher about his affiliation with the Knights of Columbus, an international Catholic charitable organization with nearly two million members. What, specifically, are the senators upset about? That the Catholic organization espouses the teachings of the Catholic Church. How dare it!
Sen. Harris asked the nominee whether he agreed with the leader of the Knights, who once said that abortion is “the killing of the innocent on a massive scale.” Somebody should tell her that Pope Francis recently compared abortion doctors to hitmen.
The senator’s question reflects an alarming trend among Democratic politicians: the desire to root out any speck of religious belief that may threaten the Holy Grail of the Left, abortion-on-demand. And what Sen. Harris seeks to do with questions like this is force underground anyone — not just Catholics — with religious objections to abortion.
Sen. Hirono, whose biggest campaign committee contributor was the pro-abortion group EMILY’S List, even went so far as to ask Buescher if he would discontinue his affiliation with the Knights. “If confirmed,” she asked, “do you intend to end your membership with this organization to avoid any appearance of bias?”
What’s the objective? The senator’s goal is to obstruct and defeat every white, male, conservative judicial nominee of the Trump administration. That was fully on display during the Kavanaugh confirmation when she demanded that every male just “shut up.” Even if this is her objective, and even if she is a woman, religious bigotry should not be tolerated.
As for Sen. Harris, she has 2020 White House aspirations. She would do well to recognize that being on the left edge of the West Coast is far from middle America. Any pathway to 2020 still takes you through Iowa — and neighboring Nebraska for that matter.
Buescher would have been in the right to blast both senators for these questions. Instead, he calmly explained that “judge[s] must decide cases and apply the law, not advocate for one side or the other in a legal proceeding.” Simply put, his faith and religiously affiliated volunteerism has no bearing on his ability to faithfully execute the duties of a federal judge. For Harris and Hirono to insinuate otherwise is an insult to all people of faith, whether Catholic, evangelical, Jewish, or Muslim.
And remember, Harris and Hirono aren’t the only senators making these suggestions. In 2017, Democratic Senators Dick Durbin and Dianne Feinstein suggested that judicial nominee Amy Coney Barrett’s religious belief rendered her unfit for the bench. A few months before that, the supposedly progressive Bernie Sanders suggested that Russell Vought, an evangelical nominee for a position in the Office of Management and Budget, was unfit for public service because of his belief in the Gospel.
Sanders’ treatment of Vought makes clear that it’s not only Catholics who should be alarmed by this trend among Democrats and progressives. The Left seeks to stifle any public expression of religious belief, whether it’s relevant to one’s job or not, and block from government anyone whose religious beliefs run counter to the ideology of the Left.
For Hirono and Harris, the target was a Catholic who disagreed with them about abortion. For Sanders, it was an evangelical who disagreed with him about salvation through Christ. Other senators will find other reasons to oppose nominees of other religions. Their goal is simple: to drive religion out of the public square, even if that means suggesting that a nominee is an extremist for belonging to a two-million-member organization that raises money for the intellectually impaired, feeds the hungry, and clothes the poor.
People of all faiths and members of both parties must rise up and speak out against this rank bigotry. If you think it will stop with Catholics, you’re already wrong. And if it’s allowed to continue, the Senate will succeed in instituting an unconstitutional religious test.
Editor’s Note: A version of this article was published by Fox News. Click here to read it.
Join CWA for a panel event co-sponsored by The Heritage Foundation on “How to Protect International Religious freedom from the Politicization of Human Rights”. This event is a side event for Secretary of State Pompeo’s Ministerial for Advancing Religious Freedom held at the U.S. Department of State July 24-26th 2018.
Panelists will discuss how our “natural” or fundamental human rights, such as religious freedom, protect the fairness of the political process by ensuring that individuals are free to think, speak, and act according to their convictions. Increasingly the human rights of individuals are being conflated with the social and economic policy priorities of particular groups and governments. This undercuts the moral legitimacy and persuasive power of our natural rights, including our freedom to live according to our religious convictions.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The issue of Immigration is very complicated and fraught with emotional and political landmines. The truth is that both Democrats and Republicans have used the issue to rev up their bases and score points against each other, ignoring the human cost.
Americans are aghast at the idea of separating legitimate parents from children. However, the answer can’t be to not enforce the law.
It’s time for Democrats and Republicans to put aside petty politics and get to work on a solution that both protects children and respects the rule of law.
It’s a false choice to suggest that we cannot keep mothers and children together. However, it is true that there must be a statutory fix to this heartbreaking problem.
I call on Congress to stop with the finger pointing and to pass legislation immediately.
President Trump is a businessman and a deal-maker — we knew that when we elected him. His administration operates differently from any other previous presidential administration, including in diplomacy, where deals are truly an “art form.” So, it is not surprising President Trump threw protocol out the window when he met last week with Chairman Kim Jon Un, the first-ever meeting between a sitting U.S. president and North Korean leader.
Those disappointed with the outcomes of the summit posit that Kim, not Trump, benefited most, suggesting the U.S. gave up more than it got, following in the footsteps of previous U.S. administrations. For example, through threatening the U.S. with armed ballistic missiles, Kim “won” a private meeting with an American president, a longtime strategic goal of his family’s regime. Further criticism says the meeting itself gave legitimacy to the dictatorship of a gross violator of human rights, and that the result of the meeting — the U.S./DRPK joint statement — is only a one-page, “unsubstantial” document which does not outline specifics of denuclearization, nor give a timeline for doing so
Valid points, but in light of previous U.S. administrations’ “flimsy” agreements and failed diplomacy with North Korea, it is important to withhold judgement and give Trump’s new approach to foreign policy a chance. In previous administrations, the U.S. has seen a bottom-up approach to diplomacy, using lower-level officials to outline a deal, only bringing the president in at the end of negotiations to sign, seal, and deliver
Instead, Trump strategically brought the prestige of the U.S. presidency to North Korea, playing to the ego of an arrogant egomaniacal president and building trust, which in turn possibly opened the door to more substantive diplomatic discussion and relationship. He even gave a brief private meeting to Kim, which Trump called “a critical gauge of whether a deal is likely.” As Trump remarked when asked about the minimum outcome he expected from the summit: “The minimum would be a relationship — you’d start at a dialogue … as a deal person, that is important.”
In addition, he used purposeful rhetoric to lay groundwork for the meeting, sometimes smoothing Kim’s feathers, and sometimes being tough, critical, and dismissive — balancing his response in accordance with the need, but always with the ultimate objective of controlling the outcomes.
One example is when, in mid-May, Kim threatened to cancel the summit. Trump abruptly and publicly cancelled the meeting with a letter citing Kim’s “tremendous anger and open hostility” in statements regarding the U.S. In immediate response, Kim back-pedaled and offered the U.S. the “time and opportunities” to reconsider the meeting “at any time, at any format,” which Trump graciously accepted. However, he later warned Kim, “It’s a one-time shot” for negotiations, telling the world, “I think it’s going to work out very well” but that at the same time Kim “won’t have that opportunity again.”
“Trump the Negotiator,” for whom deals are an “art form,” is most likely in play here — the billion-dollar businessman who knows how to build lasting coalitions for maximum productivity and profit. Over the past eighteen months, his unorthodox methods have often brought concrete and prosperous results — such as record lows for unemployment, near destruction of ISIS, reduction in illegal immigration, and securing the release of three hostages from North Korea, just to name a few.
Certainly, more details and specifics to the agreement must be outlined, definitions of what constitutes denuclearization must be clarified, and mechanisms to verifiability firmly laid out. As Mike Pompeo pointed out, the summit only opens discussion and sets conditions for future productive talks.
But Trump knows negotiation and how to get results, and is possibly laying the foundation for an agreement, not just for agreement’s sake or for the illusion of progress, but for a process that will actually have the power to accomplish full U.S. objectives. That will not happen overnight or in just one meeting. As the president himself has said: “There’s a good chance it won’t work out,” but “there’s probably an even better chance it will take a period of time.”
Let’s give President Trump a chance to do what we elected him to do—make a deal, in his own way.
Dr. Shea Garrison is Senior Advisor for Foreign Affairs at Concerned Women for America.
Editor’s Note: A version of this article was published at Townhall.com. Click here to read it.
Washington, D.C. — This morning, President Trump’s nominee for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director, Gina Haspel, began her confirmation hearing in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Penny Nance, CEO and President of Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee, issued the following statement in support of Haspel:
“Gina Haspel is a strong, intelligent woman of integrity who has unquestionable qualifications to serve as our nation’s next CIA director. She worked her way to the top in a male-dominated field, but she has risen based on her earned credentials and hard work. If confirmed, she would be the first woman to serve as CIA Director.
“Haspel is undeniably well-qualified for this crucial position. She has served in the CIA for over three decades and has shown a commitment to the rule of law and to the mission of the CIA. She previously served as Deputy Director under then-Director Pompeo and now serves as Acting Director. She has served in numerous senior-level positions, rising through the ranks of the CIA, proving her worth with each earned promotion and numerous awards and recognitions.
“Haspel requested a transfer to the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center to join the fight against al Qaeda. Her first day was a day our nation must never forget, September 11, 2001, the day we were attacked on American soil and almost 3,000 lives were lost. All of our lives forever changed.
“Perhaps most tellingly, Haspel is widely supported by her peers in the intelligence community and from national security officials. For example, Leon Panetta, former CIA Director and Secretary of Defense during the Obama Administration, said ‘I’m glad it’s Gina because, frankly, she is someone who really knows the CIA inside out.’ It’s one thing to win awards; it is another thing entirely to earn the respect of your colleagues and superiors.
“As our nation faces numerous threats from abroad, the CIA remains a crucial element of our national security. Haspel’s career at the CIA has no doubt prepared her, but her own hard work, integrity, and expertise in the field of intelligence is what makes her the best candidate for this job.
“I urge all senators to put partisan bickering and theatrics aside, focus on what is best for our national security, and swiftly confirm Haspel to be our next CIA Director.”
For an interview with Penny Nance, contact Annabelle Rutledge at [email protected] or 916-792-3973.
Washington, D.C. — Today President Trump took a bold step in terminating United States participation in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
Penny Nance, CEO and President of Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee, issued the following statement in response:
“Concerned Women for America praises the Trump Administration’s decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal as a necessary step in protecting America’s vital national security interests.
“This was a bad deal from the beginning. The JCPOA has propped up the Iranian regime and enabled its continued illicit activities. Re-imposing much needed sanctions that target critical sectors of Iran’s economy will impose pressure on the Iranian regime to alter its course and stop rewarding its bad behavior.
“We must continue to hold accountable the worlds’ leading state sponsor of terrorism, stand by our ally Israel, and protect our national interests. Withdrawing from this deal will contribute to advancing peace in the Middle East and promote the security of Israel.”
For an interview with Penny Nance, contact Annabelle Rutledge at [email protected] or 916-792-3973.
The mainstream media suicide continues. It is incredibly sad to watch. It is extremely troubling, especially when you think about the role and purpose it is supposed to serve. This weekend’s coverage of North Korea by many outlets was simply disgraceful. It is now a proven, tangible, quantifiable, irrefutable fact that you cannot trust the press.
It goes well beyond bias. Americans can see the press hates President Trump and Vice President Pence. But to prop up a murderous, oppressive regime like North Korea for the sake of embarrassing current U.S. leadership is just foolish, unnecessary, and malicious. You would think they’d be on guard and fully prepared to engage the spurious regime, but no. It seems they are willfully going along with North Korea’s deceit, because it is useful to them in “the resistance.”
Take this CNN piece by Will Ripley headlining, “Pence’s Olympic trip a ‘missed opportunity’ for North Korea diplomacy, source says.” The source? A single “senior diplomatic source close to North Korea.” The lone sub-heading in the story highlights Vice President Pence’s, “Undignified behavior” – again, based on the unnamed source close to North Korea.
Reuters added, “North Korea heads for diplomacy gold medal at Olympics,” in their coverage.
— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) February 11, 2018
The media gushed over North Korea’s forced cheerleaders and over dictator Kim Jong-un’s sister, whom the Washington Post headlined the “Ivanka Trump of North Korea.” Not to be outdone, The New York Times tweeted: “Without a word, only flashing smiles, Kim Jong-un’s sister outflanked Vice President Mike Pence in diplomacy.”
Without a word, only flashing smiles, Kim Jong-un's sister outflanked Vice President Mike Pence in diplomacy https://t.co/c2gTuSTF9e
— The New York Times (@nytimes) February 11, 2018
How embarrassing. But please understand, these outlets only harm their readers and patrons, not the supposed object of their collective loathing, President Donald J. Trump.
I speak generally, of course. There are individuals trying to fight against this.
Reporter Salena Zito tweeted, “I am deeply saddened by how my profession has normalized and glamorized this murderous regime. And then we wonder why no one trusts us.”
I am deeply saddened by how my profession has normalized and glamorized this murderous regime.
And then we wonder why no one trusts us. pic.twitter.com/pMKVPEvOWP
— SalenaZito (@SalenaZito) February 11, 2018
Jack Tapper of CNN also noticed the slant tweeting, “If you hate US leaders more than you hate the Kim Jong-un regime, you really need to read up on North Korea.”
If you hate US leaders more than you hate the Kim Jong-un regime, you really need to read up on North Korea.
Committee for Human Rights in North Korea: https://t.co/wSWqutmlFW
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) February 11, 2018
It is simply remarkable how little regard for the reality of North Korea the press has shown. The family of murdered American Otto Warmbier was with Vice President Pence at the opening ceremony for crying out loud. Is it possible they are unsympathetic to them simply because they are associated now with President Trump after accepting his invitation to the State of the Union Address? It’s unconscionable, but very possible.
Let me conclude by asking you to join me in prayer for the press. It is an institution like any other, made up of individuals who must make individual choices, even as they face the pressures of their peers, their bosses, their sponsors, and the industry as a whole. Let us pray for God to place more people of good will, interested in pursuing truth and able to stand against the pressures of the profession, in important journalism posts.
The current radical, liberal political drive against Trump is killing the press. But we cannot give up on the institution. We must seek to reform it for good.
May God hear our prayers.
Mario Diaz, Esq. is Concerned Women for America’s legal counsel. Follow him on Twitter @mariodiazesq.
In the beginning, God made man and woman in His own likeness—two distinct sexes each with unique and special characteristics—and declared His creation “good”. Who could have anticipated that this God-given and inherent identity of gender and sex would be so debated, twisted, and redefined by the liberal left today? Even more incredible is that the U.S government under Obama-era policies, not content with promoting multiple gender and sexual “identities” within the U.S., spends millions of tax dollars promoting Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Inquiring (LGBTI) cultural acceptance into foreign countries under the guise of “gender development” and “human rights”.
As Americans, regardless of whether or not we agree with a person’s sexual or gender “orientation”, we strongly believe in supporting the human rights of all people around the world and applaud the efforts of our government in this regard. That is, the right of a people to seek fulfillment of their basic needs, to feed and clothe themselves, to fully participate in society, and to be defended against human rights abuses such as violence, killing, wrongful discrimination, and false imprisonment. To be clear, we strongly support any programming which condemns the abuse of people who identify themselves as LGBTI and which builds the capacity within countries to treat all people equally and with human dignity.
However, currently the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) promote LGBT cultural and social acceptance within foreign countries through taxpayer-funded programs that extend far beyond the context of basic human rights. Rather, these programs encourage the exploration of gender and sexual identity, and promote multiple identities/orientations as a “progressive” value. These programs are backed by a political agenda begun during the Obama Administration and continue today in spite of the differing viewpoint of the Trump administration.
Recently, Concerned Women for America met with a Trump-appointed USAID senior official to express the concern that these programs contradict the priorities of foreign assistance and damage our relationship with foreign peoples. We base are concern on four main points:
- First, these programs turn gender development funding and programming away from increasing the wellbeing of women and girls around the world. This is unfortunate, especially considering that initiatives protecting the rights of females and advancing their participation in the social, economic, and political spheres are severely lacking in support and funding. To consider: While millions of people are victims of human trafficking each year, 50% of whom are women and 21% of whom are girls under the age of 18, and while 41% of girls in the least developed countries are married before the age of 18, the U.S. is funding homosexual and transgender cultural acceptance into foreign countries under the name of gender development. We at Concerned Women for America consider this taxpayer money that is not well spent.
- Second, these programs and initiatives violate the conscience, culture, values and religious beliefs of the majority of the Muslim, Jewish, and Christian people in the countries we propose to “support” with U.S. aid.
- Third, as taxpayer funded programs, these programs should represent the values of the majority of American citizens, but unfortunately they do not.
- And fourth, there is little to no scientific research to show that the cultural socialization of LGBT values abroad contributes to foreign policy goals or even the developmental objectives of USAID’s Guiding Principles.
As was explained to CWA during the meeting at USAID, many of these programs have been left over from the previous administration and will remain until their contract runs out. Simply put, just because a new administration takes office, it does not mean that current programming will immediately expire or change. However, CWA wants our constituents to be aware of how foreign taxpayer dollars are currently spent and to know that we are monitoring the progress of the potential change in the focus of U.S. development aid and foreign relations. For example, the State Department’s Bureau of Counterterrorism is currently seeking a nonprofit to “explore gender identities of boys and men in Kenya”, stating that men being “tough, heterosexual, aggressive, unemotional, and achieving” increases their vulnerability to joining groups of Islamic extremism. 
Concerned Women for America urges our government to strongly oppose human rights abuses against LGBT communities but also to no longer entangle U.S. tax dollars with LGBT cultural issues overseas through U.S. embassies, schools, and international programming. We ask that our tax dollars be redirected toward objectives that focus more clearly on U.S. foreign diplomacy and developmental goals. We ask that our “gender empowerment” tax dollars be used to promote policies and programs which best support the rights and wellbeing of females around the world. Last, we ask that State and USAID-funded programs be representative of the majority of the values and beliefs of Americans and of the foreign cultures which we support.
The following is only a small part of LGBT activist efforts on behalf of the U.S. government. According to the Obama White House Fact Sheet from June 2016: 
- The U.S. Department of State … “launched two global funding partnerships – the Global Equality Fund and the LGBT Global Development Partnership – which have provided millions of dollars in assistance … to LGBT civil society activists and organizations” (emphasis added). The Global Equality Fund alone spent more than $30 million dollars in 80 countries.
- Multiple departments and agencies, including State, USAID, Homeland Security, Health and Human Services, and the Peace Corps, provide training “for staff and implementing partners to better understand the issues of gender identity and sexual orientation and agency roles in advancing the human rights of LGBT persons”.
- U.S. embassies, consulates, USAID missions, and Department of Defense installations around the world host and participate in gay pride events, and march in gay pride parades. U.S. embassies around the world fly rainbow flags to show homosexual pride support.
Currently, USAID supports a large number of field- and Washington-based programs and funding avenues that are LGBT-specific or LGBT-inclusive, including within schools in developing countries. These programs are based on the principles written in the 23-page USAID policy document titled “LGBTI Vision for Action.” A few examples are:
- USAID’s LGBTI Global Development Partnership key activities include awarding over 100 grants to LGBTI civil society organizations and training over 1,700 LGBTI entrepreneurs and businesses
- USAID promotes “LGBTI Education Inclusion” in schools around the world through multiple avenues including:
- Regional Development Mission for Asia: Partnering the Purple My School initiative through a program called “Being LGBTI in Asia” in schools in eight different countries. This program is facilitated by teachers who discuss the issues of homophobia and the free expression of gender identity and sexual orientation. Students are encouraged to wear, draw, or make something purple.
- Hosting LGBTI rights and inclusion training to over 140 school principals in USAID’s Basic Education Program in Kosovo within its annual School Management and Leadership Program.
- Hosting a Live Chat for LGBTI Pride Month at the U.S. Embassy in Cambodia
- Providing LGBTI Online Training courses through USAID University
 United Nations (2014) UNODC, Global Report on Trafficking in Persons 2014, (United Nations Publication, Sales No. E 14. V.10) p. 5
 UNICEF Child-protection-child marriage database may 2016, Web Accessed August 2017 at: data.unicef.org.
 The White House Office of the Press Secretary (June 29, 2016) June 2016 Update. Web accessed October 17, 2017 at: https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/the-press-office/2016/06/29/fact-sheet-promoting-and-protecting-human-rights-lgbt-persons