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Catholic League warns against continued portrayal of Roberts as ‘religious extremist’

.- As the ongoing scrutiny of Supreme Court nominee Judge John Roberts continues, Catholic League president William Donahue said critics will likely try to falsely brand the Catholic judge as a “religious extremist.” “While the red flags noting his attendance at a ‘traditional’ Catholic church with his ‘pro-life’ wife continue to be flown,” Donahue said, “it is unlikely that [Senators] Kennedy, Durbin, Leahy and Schumer will press Roberts too hard about his ‘personal’ views. Instead, they will try to paint him as an extremist. And in doing so, they will pick up on what advocacy groups are now saying.”

Since his nomination earlier this summer, Roberts has been at the center of what many call a “religious litmus test” over his potential appointment--something supporters say is utterly unconstitutional.

Donahue noted that “Americans United for Separation of Church and State, People for the American Way and the Alliance for Justice have all issued reports on Roberts; they have their talking points down well. None of these groups has ever had the slightest interest in defending religious liberty—their entire understanding of the First Amendment provision on religion is centered on talk about a mythical ‘wall’ separating church and state.”

He said that these groups claim to be concerned about protecting so-called “religious minority groups” from “majoritarian” groups like Christians.

“In other words,” Donahue said, “we need to shield the 15 percent of Americans who are not Christian from ‘those’ Christians…Their goal is to paint Roberts as a fanatic because he does not share their fanatical interpretation of the First Amendment. Nice try.”

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