Monday, June 25, 2007

On Capitol Hill This Week, Vol. XIV, No. 18a

No. 18a



The Senate is set this week to take a second shot at passing Ted Kennedy's immigration "reform" bill over the objections of the American people, but the battle is far from over. While we are concerned that the process in the Senate appears to be rigged in favor of this "grand compromise," there is mounting speculation that the bill may face higher hurdles in the House of Representatives, where members are more responsive to their constituents.

Indeed, there was an encouraging sign in the House when Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-CO) succeeded in passing an amendment that would withhold certain federal funds from cities that have adopted "sanctuary policies" for illegal aliens in violation of federal law.

Rep. Tancredo has tried repeatedly in recent years to pass this amendment, but it has always failed. So you can imagine the shock in Washington when 49 Democrats crossed over to support the Tancredo amendment! Those 49 Democrats provided the necessary margin of support to pass the amendment on a vote of 234-to-189. It is also worth noting that a similar amendment proposed in the Senate during last month's debate on comprehensive immigration "reform" failed to pass by one vote.

What does that tell us about the fate of the Senate's immigration plan in the House? As Rep. Tancredo suggested, "If I were [Speaker] Nancy Pelosi, I'd be asking if she [sic] could pass a vote on amnesty on the House side. If she lost 50 Democrats on this one, and she says she needs 70 Republicans to pass the immigration plan, this is an interesting indicator of things coming down the pike, and that the times, they are a- changing." (Gary Bauer)

· This bill is being resurrected again in the Senate on Tuesday, June 26. Please call your Senators now at 202-224-3121 and tell them to vote against allowing S. 1639 to proceed to the Senate floor. A vote to allow this bill to proceed is a vote for open borders!! Your calls are critical to defeat this bill and to ensure the establishment of sound immigration policy for the United States! Be sure that you cover your phone call with prayer, for the Senate must not ignore the will of the people to first secure our borders.

· "That ye may approve things that are excellent: that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ." (Philippians 1:10)


We have received news from the Family Research Council that the Hate Crimes Bill (S. 1105) may reach the floor of the Senate for action as early as the week after the Fourth of July recess. For detailed information about the Hate Crimes Bill and how it may be used to silence Christians, go to the website for the Family Research Council at: We ask continued prayer over this matter, repeating our prayer request from our last edition of the "OCAP," below:

· Continue to pray that the American people will understand the consequences of Hate Crimes laws - the intimidation, silencing and punishment of those who view homosexual behavior as sin. Pray that the President will follow his advisors' counsel and veto the legislation.

· " . . . to punish the righteous is not good, Nor to strike princes for their uprightness." (Proverbs 17:26) "The scoffer will be gone, the arrogant will disappear . . . Those who convict the innocent by their false testimony will disappear. A similar fate awaits those who use trickery to pervert justice and who tell lies to destroy the innocent." (Isaiah 29:20,21)


The House voted narrowly, 223 votes to 201, on Thursday to reverse the "Mexico City Policy" approved in 1984, that bans contraception aid to groups overseas that offer abortions, and challenges a pillar of President Bush's foreign aid policy. If the proposal passes the Senate, Bush is likely to swiftly veto it and be upheld by conservative lawmakers, who say no assistance of any kind should be given to organizations that promote or offer abortions.

But ironically, Planned Parenthood, the nation's biggest abortion provider; despite a drop in donations and the first fall in income from clinics in its history, made a high profit last year, thanks to the American taxpayer. Pro-lifers want this to stop. During its 2005- 2006 fiscal year, the nonprofit Planned Parenthood Federation of America performed a record 264,943 abortions, attained a high profit of $55.8 million and received record taxpayer funding of $305.3 million. Total income went up 2.4 percent, passing $900 million for the first time according to Jim Sedlak, executive director of Stop Planned Parenthood (STOPP) International. (AP;

· Father God, we thank You that it is You who "rules and overrules" all works of evil. We thank You that, as we cry out to You, in Your timing, this murderous practice WILL BE STOPPED, both in our nation and oversease. We offer You praise, in Jesus' Name. Amen.

· ". . . and have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them." (Ephesians 5:11)


The courageous effort to allow citizens to vote to restore and protect marriage was defeated by the Massachusetts Legislature on a vote of 45 to 151. Sadly, all three branches of government conspired to frustrate the desire of Massachusetts voters. Governor Deval Patrick, who proudly marched in the homosexual parade, reportedly bought off votes with political favors. The pastors and pro-family faithful in Massachusetts need our prayer and encouragement.

· This fight continues. Please pray for the pro-family pastors and leaders of Massachusetts who gave so much in this battle. Pray that God will yet show Himself strong on behalf of marriage, the family, truth and righteousness in Massachusetts. Pray that He would greatly encourage His faithful who fought so bravely.

· "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord."(I Corinthians 15:58) Intercessors for America


This afternoon at 3:00 p.m., Dr. John Barrasso, an orthopedic surgeon from Casper, Wyoming, was sworn into office as an interim senator for Senator Craig Thomas who died on June 4 from complications related to leukemia. Barrasso, who has served as a State Senator in Wyoming, will serve until the beginning of 2009. A special election in November 2008 will decide who will finish Thomas' term through 2012.

Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., welcomed Barrasso in a brief speech on the Senate floor. "His efficiency is just unmatched; his knowledge of Wyoming and the issues, which includes energy and of course health, as he's an orthopedic surgeon, will make a great difference in our debate back here," Enzi said. Enzi called him an extremely capable person and hard worker who will reach across the aisle. He also applauded the state Republican Party, its chairman and the governor. "No one's going to be able to replace Craig Thomas, but working with John we can ensure the representation of Wyoming in the Senate will remain second to none," Enzi said. (CHPP; Casper Star- Tribune)

· Lift up Senator Barrasso in prayer as he must quickly learn the complex ways of serving as a United States Senator. As he "learns the ropes" of governing in his new position, pray that he be kept free from any unholy alliances or other yokes of entanglement that would impede his ability to carry out the will of the people of the State of Wyoming. Offer praise, too, for the quick action taken by the Governor, the Republican State Committee and the voters in Wyoming, so that this vacant seat in the U.S. Senate would be filled in a timely fashion. Praise God!

· "Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence." (I Timothy 2:1,2)


The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform has determined that despite objections from the National Archives and Records Administration, Vice President Dick Cheney's office has exempted itself since 2003, from a presidential executive order that seeks to protect national security information generated by the government. Under that order, executive branch offices are required to give the Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO) at the National Archives, data on how much material it has classified and declassified. Cheney's office provided the information in 2001 and 2002, then stopped. Congressman Henry Waxman, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said vice president Cheney's office claims it need not comply with the executive order because it is not an entity within the executive branch. "He's saying he's above the law," said Waxman, (D-Calif.), whose committee released a series of correspondence yesterday outlining the situation. "It just seems to me this is arrogant and shows bad judgment."

A statement on the Committee's website reads: "Vice President Exempts His Office from the Requirements for Protecting Classified Information" -- "The Oversight Committee has learned that over the objections of the National Archives, Vice President Cheney exempted his office from the presidential order that establishes government-wide procedures for safeguarding classified national security information. The Vice President asserts that his office is not an 'entity within the executive branch.'"

Today, the White House defended Vice President Dick Cheney's decision not to cooperate with the ISOO, a government office charged with safeguarding national security information, and denied that Cheney ever suggested the agency be shut down. Despite objections from the National Archives and others, presidential spokesmen say Cheney's office is not bound by certain sections of a presidential executive order that seeks to protect national security information generated by the government. Under the order, executive branch offices are required to give the Information Security Oversight Office at the archives data on how much material they classify and declassify. Cheney's office provided the information in 2001 and 2002, then stopped. White House deputy press secretary Dana Perino said it's clear that the president's executive order never intended for the vice president's office to be treated as an "agency." "He's not exempt from following the laws of the United States," Perino said. "He's exempt just from this reporting requirement in this particular executive order." (Washington Post; Fox News; AP; New York Times)

· Father God, we humbly pray that You will allow us to see the truth in this possibly politically motivated matter. We pray Lord, for Vice President Dick Cheney, that he and the White House will seek Your wisdom and not split the Executive Branch in contentiousness! May he submit himself and his office underneath Your authority, and may we all find the grace to wait upon You while hidden things are revealed unto righteousness.

· "What is hidden He brings out to light." (Job 28:11b)


In one of the most testing times in their bilateral ties since the end of the Cold War, President Bush and Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet at the Bush family compound in Kennebunkport, Maine, on July 1-2 to try to halt the slide in U.S.-Russian relations. Bush had arrived in Europe for G8 meetings hoping to dispel Putin's anxieties, particularly over the planned U.S. missile defense shield to be located in Poland the Czech Republic. Additionally, The Bush administration, with hot wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and looming crises in Iran and North Korea, has been anxious not to pick a new fight with Moscow, despite deepening concerns about the Kremlin's commitment to human rights, open markets and political liberties. (Washington Times) [Reported by: Intercessors for America]

· Lift up prayer in advance of these meetings at Kennebunkport, asking our Lord to "prepare the way" in each man's heart for His sovereign will to be accomplished during these talks. Pray that any hidden agenda on the part of President Putin would be revealed, so that all hidden things will come to light and honest discussions will then unfold at the beautiful site in Maine. Pray!

· "What is hidden he brings forth to light." (Job 28:11b)


In what a pro-life group is calling a "tremendous victory for citizens," the Supreme Court on Monday upheld Americans' right to engage in grassroots lobbying on television and radio in the period leading up to primary and general elections. The justices said a pro-life group should have been allowed to air an ad mentioning the name of Sen. Russ Feingold within 30 days of the Wisconsin primary.

"The Court soundly rejected the attempts by Senators McCain and Feingold and their allies to silence Wisconsin Right Life's efforts to inform the public regarding an important issue pending in Congress and to urge citizens to contact their elected officials regarding that issue," said Barbara Lyons, executive director of Wisconsin Right to Life. "This is a tremendous victory for all citizens and citizen organizations," she said. (

· Offer a great chorus of PRAISE for this ruling! Our republican form of government thrives when our citizens are free to voice their opinions in the public square. Praise God!

· "What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who then can be against us?" (Romans 8:31)


In a 5 to 4 decision, the Supreme Court Monday blocked a lawsuit by atheists and agnostics against the White House's faith-based initiative, which helps religious charities get federal grants. The suit targeted eight Bush administration officials, including the head of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives. Justice Samuel Alito wrote that the taxpayers' group the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc., which filed the suit, "set out a parade of horribles that they claim could occur" if the initiative is allowed to go forward. "Of course, none of these things has happened."

The conservative American Center for Law and Justice applauded the ruling, saying it "sends a powerful message that atheists and others antagonistic to religion do not get an automatic free pass to bring Establishment Clause lawsuits.The Supreme Court got it right in determining that the plaintiffs who challenged the president's faith-based initiative had no legal standing to do so," said ACLJ Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow. "This decision will have serious ramifications for separationist attempts to claim special privileges to sue as taxpayers without showing that a law or government activity actually injured them in any way. This is an important victory for the judicial system and for the president's faith-based initiative," said Sekulow. "By rejecting a claim to special treatment for atheists and other separationists, the high court took an important step toward restoring equity to the legal system with respect to federal challenges in the Establishment Clause arena," he added. (

· Praise God AGAIN for this decision, too!! If one were to study the original letter that President Thomas Jefferson sent to the good citizens of Danbury, CT, in 1802, explaining the true definition of the relationship between church and state, none of this confusion would exist. Offer praise that, while the enemy of freedom has tried for over 200 years to confuse this issue, our Supreme Court is now "getting it straight." Praise God!

· "But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You; Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them; Let those also who love Your name Be joyful in You." (Psalm 5:11)

..U.S. Institute of Peace
A massive new facility to be built on a corner of the National Mall near the Potomac River will become the new headquarters for the U.S. Institute of Peace, USA Today reported. Located at the northwest corner of the National Mall at the intersection of Constitution Avenue and 23rd Street NW, the site faces the Lincoln Memorial and is adjacent to the Korean War and Vietnam Veterans memorials. Final designs for the site were approved last week and construction will begin later this year on the six-story building - complete with "dove wings." The glass, steel, and concrete building will emit a "soft glow" at night. Dovelike "wings" will create white arches over the roof, dipping down over the building's edge.

The little- known nonpartisan institute, a government-funded think tank and training center, was originally intended to be on equal footing with the War Department, but remained only an idea for nearly two centuries. It was finally created with federal funding in the 1980s. The peace institute is best known for facilitating the bipartisan Iraq Study Group. "We think peace has a place and deserves a place on the National Mall," said Tara Sonenshine, an adviser on the project. Congress approved the mall site for the institute in 1996. Lawmakers have provided $100 million for the building, and the institute is raising private funds to complete the $180 million project. It will include a library and research space, a conference center and a public education center with interactive exhibits.

Its goals are to help prevent and resolve violent conflicts, promote post-conflict stability and development, and increase peacebuilding capacity, tools, and intellectual capital worldwide. The Institute does this by empowering others with knowledge, skills, and resources, as well as by directly engaging in peace-building efforts around the globe.By law, the United States Institute of Peace is governed by a bipartisan board of directors. The board is composed of twelve members from outside federal service appointed by the President of the United States and confirmed by the Senate, and four ex-officio member. (

· How interesting to learn that such an institute has been planned for nearly two centuries! What grandiose plans man thinks he can achieve in the world when only Jesus Christ of Nazareth, the Prince of Peace, can bring peace to the world. How effective was the League of Nations and how much has been accomplished through the United Nations? Should such a massive building be constructed near the Lincoln Memorial? Its presence will certainly detract from the majesty of honor given to Abraham Lincoln. Pray in the spirit about this building.

· "Good men will never be displaced, but the wicked have no footing in the land." (Proverbs 10:30) Moffatt's Translation