Evangelical leader expresses “disappointment” with GOP “Pledge” but says it’s “satisfactory”

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins released a statement Thursday morning on the House Republican leadership’s “Pledge to America.”

“While I have some disappointment that the pledge to honor the values issues such as traditional marriage were not more clearly defined within the document, this is a significant improvement over the 94 Contact with America which was silent on the moral issues. The Pledge is not exceptional, but it is satisfactory, as it does lay a foundation to build upon, and it moves Congressional Republicans to a place of public acknowledgment that values issues are to be a part of the conservative way forward.”

On Wednesday, the American Principles Project said they and other leading values groups had presented House Minority Leader John Boehner and GOP leaders with more than 30,000 signatures demanding that they be included in the Republican document. But the “Pledge” turned out to have little of substance for the value voters movement.

“We pledge to advance policies that promote greater liberty, wider opportunity, a robust defense, and national economic prosperity. We pledge to honor families, traditional marriage, life, and the private and faith-based organizations that form the core of our American values,” it said in the introduction.

The only specifics that followed in the subsequent 21 pages, however, were a promise to “permanently end taxpayer funding of abortion and codify the Hyde Amendment,” and to pass conscience clauses into law for physicians and medical workers.

Nonetheless, APP’s founder Robert P. George said late Wednesday after reading the document that the group would “fully and enthusiastically support the Pledge.”

“What we demanded of the GOP was a firm and clear commitment to marriage, life, and the free and full participation of faith-based institutions in our public life. We got it. Our goal was not to shift the focus of the ‘Pledge’ to social issues, but to make sure that the GOP’s longstanding pro-life and pro-marriage commitments were not abandoned, compromised, or passed over in silence,” George said.

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