Tony Perkins, president of the
Christian conservative Family Research Council (FRC), has called on
supporters to pray for the defeat of a bill that would prohibit
discrimination against the LGBT community.
In October, Nancy Pelosi, whom
Democrats this week nominated for Speaker of the House, promised to
make passage of the Equality Act a top priority if Democrats retake
control of the House.
“It isn’t in our ‘For The People’
agenda because it doesn’t get that specific, but there’s one more
because it’s personal for me that I really want to do, and it’s
called the Equality Act,” Pelosi said. “The Equality Act expands
ending discrimination against LGBTQ people and women and adding that
to the Civil Rights Act.”
First introduced in 2015, the Equality
Act seeks to prohibit anti-LGBT discrimination in seven key areas,
including credit, education, employment, federal funding, housing,
jury service and public accommodations, by effectively expanding the
Civil Rights Act, originally approved in 1964.
Perkins, who has close ties to
President Donald Trump and the Republican Party, reminded supporters
in a press release of Pelosi's promise and asked them to pray for the
bill's defeat. In his prayer, Perkins described gay sex as “immoral
behavior” and the Equality Act as an effort to “punish Christians
… with a biblical view of marriage and human sexuality.”
“Father, please open the eyes of all
Americans to understand that religious liberty, which our original 13
states demanded be included as our first freedom in the Bill of
Rights, must be honored above behavior which is immoral. Lord, expose
the underlying intent of this effort – to punish Christians and
others with a biblical view of marriage and human sexuality, and so
to set a precedent from which to expand their persecutions under the
guise of law. Deliver us, O God!” he wrote.
The Family Research Council has been
labeled a “hate group” for its anti-LGBT rhetoric by the Southern
Poverty Law Center (SPLC).