Lawmakers to Rebuff Attempts to Establish Religious Registries

A bill to outlaw religious registries drew hundreds of supporters to Olympia Thursday. Dan Frizzell has that story.

 “There’s a lot of fear.  There’s a lot of uncertainty.  There are a lot of families that are wondering how they’re going to be affected by some of the reckless actions we’ve seen on the part of the President.” 

Expressing dismay that such a law might be necessary, religious leaders stood with state lawmakers to champion legislation preventing state agencies from cooperating in potential federal efforts to establish religious registries. Talking to an overflow crowd in a Capitol reception room in Olympia, Jewish, Muslim and Christian leaders pledged mutual support for one another’s communities, and for the religious freedoms guaranteed by the United States constitution.  Sponsor of the House bill, Democratic Representative Derek Stanford, introduced the legislation after numerous contacts by constituents in Bothell, the diverse city he represents north of Seattle.

“The main message I’ve heard from people is just that fear and uncertainty that they’re going to be scapegoated and no one’s going to stand up for them.  I want to make it clear that we’re not going to stand by silently and watch the scapegoating of an entire religious community.” 

Stanford’s religious freedom bill will have a public hearing in the House Judiciary Committee Tuesday morning at 10.  A companion bill sponsored by Democratic Senator Guy Palumbo has not been scheduled for a hearing by Republican Senate leaders. In Olympia, I’m Dan Frizzell.