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Did Bernie Sanders Embrace a 'Religious Test' for a Trump Nominee?

09 Juin 2017

Former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders became agitated and hostile on Wednesday during the questioning of Deputy Budget Director nominee Russell Vought, as he noted a social media post written by Vought that remarked that Muslims "do not know God because they have rejected Jesus Christ his Son, and they stand condemned".

Things got heated during Vought's nomination hearing Wednesday when Sanders attacked him about past comments Vought made about Muslims. In it, Vought wrote: "Muslims do not simply have a deficient theology. They do not know God because they have rejected Jesus Christ his Son, and they stand condemned".

He then pointed to a portion of an article written by Vought last January in response to the Wheaton College controversy surrounding then-professor Larycia Hawkins' assertion that Christians and Muslims "worship the same God". Even if one were to excuse Senator Sanders for not realising that all Christians of every age have insisted that faith in Jesus Christ is the only pathway to salvation, it is inconceivable that Senator Sanders would cite religious belieds as disqualifying an individual for public office in defence of the United States Constitution. Vought defended Wheaton's actions against the professor, partially on grounds that she was challenging the "orthodox Christian" belief that salvation is extended only to those who explicitly accept Jesus Christ.

"I don't know how many Muslims there are in America", Sanders asked Vought during questioning.

Vought reiterated that he wrote the piece as a defense of his faith and school.

I want to know that as well. Are you suggesting that all of those people stand condemned? "What about Jews? They stand condemned too?"

"Senator, I'm a Christian.", Vought began again. Perhaps Sanders inappropriate actions can serve as a caution to Christian politicians to consider the Golden Rule in choosing public servants - If you don't like it when a religious test is used on your in-group, then don't use one on members of out-groups.

"But there are other people who have different religions in this country and around the world. In your judgment, do you think that people who are not Christians are going to be condemned?"

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Vought responded, "as a Christian I believe that all individuals are made in the image of God and are worthy of dignity and respect regardless of their religious beliefs".

The head of the Southern Baptist Convention public policy and religious liberty arm blasted Sen.

Just yesterday we saw an example of a distinguished U.S. senator in a confirmation hearing who came pretty close to embracing the kind of "religious test ... as a qualification to any office or public trust" that is explicitly prohibited by Article VI of the U.S. Constitution.

'No religious test shall ever be required of those seeking public office.

"W$3 e should expect far more from an elected official who has taken an oath to support and defend the Constitution".

Evangelist Franklin Graham also weighed in on the controversy, posting on his Facebook page, "Is Bernie Sanders right? NO".

"One can not deny the Son and truly worship the Father", Mohler said. Sanders concluded, "I would simply say, Mr. Chairman, that this nominee is really not someone who this country is supposed to be about".

Sanders made his stance quite clear on Vought's nomination, which awaits an official vote in the Senate Budget Committee.

Did Bernie Sanders Embrace a 'Religious Test' for a Trump Nominee?