Obama pressed on faith-based hiring
July 23rd, 2011
11:41 AM ET

Obama pressed on faith-based hiring

By Alexander Mooney, CNN

(CNN)–President Obama signaled Friday he has no intention of rescinding a controversial executive order that permits some faith-based organizations that receive federal funding to discriminate against non-believers in their hiring practices.

The president’s comments on the matter came during a town hall event in Maryland, when a questioner who identified herself as an atheist pressed Obama on statements he made as a candidate in 2008 suggesting he was against permitting discriminatory hiring among faith-based organizations backed by taxpayer dollars.

“It’s very straightforward that people shouldn’t be discriminated against for race, gender, sexual orientation, and – or religious affiliation,” Obama said Monday. “What has happened is, is that there has been a carve-out, dating back to President Clinton’s presidency, for religious organizations in their hiring for particular purposes.”

The executive order in question, issued by President Clinton and affirmed by President Bush in 2002, states that while religious organizations that receive federal funds cannot discriminate against beneficiaries of their programs, they “may retain religious terms in its organization's name, select its board members on a religious basis, and include religious references in its organization's mission statements and other chartering or governing documents.”

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Filed under: Atheism • Barack Obama • Belief • Politics

soundoff (105 Responses)
  1. Gospel Genie

    When anyone SAYS they are an athiest, in effect they are saying: "I KNOW all things, and I KNOW there is no God" – this is someone saying "Since I KNOW there is no God... I, therefore, knowing everything, am god!". In reality, an athiest can only say I BELIEVE THERE IS NO GOD. Now, my point goes like this: As a Born Again Christian (thanks to Christ for shedding His Blood for me, and accepting me as an adopted son into His family), if I am wrong, I've lost nothing. But, anyone claiming athiesm as their religion, has lost everything.... if that person dies with that belief. Take a look at yourself. You have the sense of touch, you can probably see and hear, you can probably taste, and even reproduce. How can you possibly say all of this happened by accident... you can see colors, you can count on the seasons taking place, you believe taking a breath you will, by faith, use your lungs to take on oxygen. It certainly takes more faith to NOT believe in God than it does to accept the fact that "In The Beginning God created...." (Genesis 1:1) As far as Jesus being a Jew, praise the Lord... it isn't a problem for me to accept Him being Jewish, my joy comes from Jesus Christ, a Jew, accepting my repentance and belief in what He did for me, an undeserving sinner.

    March 25, 2012 at 7:49 pm |
  2. Matt

    Here's how I see it, and I have no problem saying I'm an Atheist. If I were a Christian, running a Christian organization, why on earth would I hire a Jew, a Muslim, or an Atheist? How could you trust that person to truly believe in your organization, or what your organizations goals are? If I worked for a Christian group that went on missions, my Atheism would prevent me from doing that type of work out of principle... so I honestly do not see the problem. I would not work for a Christian organization any more than I would for an Islamic, Jewish, Catholic, Buddhist, Hindu, or other organization because.... I DON'T BELONG THERE. I have a very hard time imagining someone wanting to go out of their way to work for a faith group that they don't believe in... seems pretty silly to me.

    August 4, 2011 at 7:04 pm |
  3. AvdBerg

    By reading the comments on this Blog it seems very obvious to us that all the foundations of the earth out of course (Psalms 82:5). For a better understanding of this scriptural verse we invite you to read the latest article ‘CNN Belief Blog ~ Sign of the Times’ listed on our website http://www.aworlddeceived.ca

    Please ignore any messages that inform you that we are on a troll and that ask you to activate the abuse button or even refer you to a gaychristian website. It is an attempt to discredit the work of our Ministry, which is for the edifying of the Body of Christ – His Church (Eph. 4:12).

    July 29, 2011 at 6:47 pm |
    • .....

      Thanks for proving what a troll you are by posting the same thing over and over again. This AvdBerg is a troll on this site trying to sell their cult and book, when ever you see their post click the report abuse link to get rid of this troll.

      July 29, 2011 at 8:27 pm |
  4. Deborah

    Religion as we know it today should not have anything to do with our government or give points to our presidential elections. It is not about religion, it is rather the people we vote in have an actual relationship with GOD or not. The only way you can have a relationship with GOD is if you repent of your sins, ask for forgiveness, and get baptized in the name of the LORD Jesus Christ. Then you have to study GOD's word and pray with an open heart for GOD to give you the wisdon to do His will. To many people claim to be christians, but Christ is nowhere in their hearts. If our government officials truly had Christ in them, they would not have our government in the shape it is in today!

    July 28, 2011 at 10:28 am |
    • AvdBerg

      By reading the comments on this Blog it seems very obvious to us that all the foundations of the earth out of course . For a better understanding of this scriptural verse we invite you to visit our website http://www.gaychristian101.com

      July 29, 2011 at 6:48 pm |
    • debra

      Religion and state are supposed to be seperated. if everyone did what you say this would be an entirely evangelical christian country.... I am a Jew and i find your post offensive. What would you do with people of other religions who did not want to repent and take jesus as their savior. I think there has been enough of that kind of trying to convert people to christianity to last for a million years... or maybe six million and over.
      Doesnt it just kill you, that jesus was a JEW!

      August 16, 2011 at 12:06 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.