Thursday, September 19, 2013

"Indefensible" -- Obama Administration Opposes Religious Rights Envoy

For a second time, the House of Representatives on Wednesday passed legislation – by an overwhelming margin – to establish a special envoy focusing on the rights of religious minorities in parts of the Islamic world, with priority given to Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.

The Obama administration opposes the legislation, and the previous bill died in the Senate after a Democratic senator placed a hold on it, citing State Department advice, and then-Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-Mass.) declined to hold hearings on the matter.

The bill, introduced by Reps. Frank Wolf (R-Va.) and Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) passed Wednesday by a vote of 402-22, an almost identical result to the 2011 vote, which was 402-20.

Wolf urged swift action in the Senate this time.

In a speech on the House floor, he called the administration’s opposition to the establishment of the special envoy post “short-sighted and, frankly, indefensible.”

Here's more from CNS News.