RBB Speaker Ed Brayton on Rachel Maddow

Ed Brayton, Rock Beyond Belief speakerLast month, we announced that Ed Brayton was going to be a speaker at Rock Beyond Belief. As you may know, Ed maintains a high-profile web-presence.

Well, he is no stranger to mainstream radio and television either. Earlier this year, on one of his many appearances on The Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC, he was talking about Bart Stupak (D) Michigan. Stupak is a long serving U.S. Congressman who had been at the center of a controversy involving a religious institution/lobbying group’s influence on legislation he put forth.

During this Maddow appearance, most of the time was spent talking about the aforementioned group, ‘The Family’ and the related group ‘C Street’. All of that was interesting stuff, but it overshadowed Ed’s mention of another (related) issue with Rep. Stupak’s legislative choices.

Last summer,  Mr. Stupak introduced a bill that was a blatant violation of the separation of Church and State, involving land owned by the U.S. Coast Guard. Watch the video below, which is scripted to start at the relevant part (3:45)

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PR9NiME4GaA&start=226

The 58 year old, 9-term incumbent of Michigan’s 1st U.S. Congressional District announced his retirement one month later.

Ed’s dedication to honesty and the U.S. Constitution is what makes us proud to have him on board with us. Now go read his blog, this story is many months old, and he posts several times a day with just as much important content.

***UPDATE: Ed has just posted some additional information to our comments section that clarifies and expands on this story.

Ed Brayton:

I should note that the attention we gave to Stupak’s unconstitutional amendment resulted in it being withdrawn. It was actually Chris Rodda [MRFF's head of research - RBB] who first found the amendment, which would have given Coast Guard land to a Christian school free of charge, when she was doing some research on something else. She called me and I reported about it for the Michigan Messenger, a state news site that I edit.

Chris Rodda, of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF) is also the author of excellent “Liars For Jesus“. Like Ed’s experience, she has proven to be an enormous help with Rock Beyond Belief without getting or asking for any credit.

I contacted Americans United for Separation of Church and State for comment on it and they wrote a letter to Stupak informing him that his amendment was unconstitutional and a violation of federal law. A couple days later he withdrew the amendment and replaced it with one that required selling the land at fair market value, as the law requires. So this was a situation where several people involved in Rock Beyond Belief worked together to stop an unconstitutional action.

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About Justin Griffith
  • http://scienceblogs.com/dispatches/ Ed Brayton

    Thanks for the kind words, Justin. I should note that the attention we gave to Stupak’s unconstitutional amendment resulted in it being withdrawn. It was actually Chris Rodda who first found the amendment, which would have given Coast Guard land to a Christian school free of charge, when she was doing some research on something else. She called me and I reported about it for the Michigan Messenger, a state news site that I edit. I contacted Americans United for Separation of Church and State for comment on it and they wrote a letter to Stupak informing him that his amendment was unconstitutional and a violation of federal law. A couple days later he withdrew the amendment and replaced it with one that required selling the land at fair market value, as the law requires. So this was a situation where several people involved in Rock Beyond Belief worked together to stop an unconstitutional action.


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