Santorum Urges Passing FADA to Protect Heroes (Like Kim Davis)

We’ve talked a lot about the First Amendment Defense Act here at The Pulse. FADA would protect those who believe in natural marriage between one man and one woman from government discrimination, and as we’re seeing in far too many cases across the country, we really need that.

Rick Santorum was on Fox News on Friday, where he offered a solution to the whole Kim Davis saga — pass the First Amendment Defense Act, and make the Left live and let live when it comes to same-sex marriage (though it’s becoming increasingly clear that they want conformity, not harmony). In a separate interview on CNN with Chris Cuomo, he called Kim Davis heroic for having the courage to stand up to the Supreme Court’s overreach.

You can watch and read both interviews below:

GREG JARRETT: I saw your tweet yesterday. You tweeted, ‘We should not have to choose between keeping our job and practicing our faith. Senator, why is this an either/or choice? Why can’t she still practice her faith, but just not do it on the job in a way that interferes with the legal rights of other citizens?

RICK SANTORUM: Then she’s not practicing her faith, right?

JARRETT: Then she shouldn’t have the job, should she?

SANTORUM: Or we should make an accommodation. I mean, that’s really what the issue is here. Why are we forcing people, if there’s other options, other ways to accomplish what people want to do? Why are we forcing people to do something that in some faiths is a grievous sin, a very serious sin to cooperate in — so why are we asking people to do that when we can make accommodations?

JARRETT: Well, I like your idea of accommodations, and so did the judge. He tried to accommodate her yesterday. He said, look, I won’t make you issue licenses, but if you won’t interfere with your deputy clerks, then I’ll let you out of jail and you can go back to your job. But she said no, I’m going to interfere with my deputy clerks.

SANTORUM: Yeah, and in this case what we’re talking about here is, if we can pass a law that says to anybody, not just a clerk of courts but anybody who’s acting in a governmental responsibility — we can pass the First Amendment Defense Act. It will give people the opportunity to live by their own convictions and allow accommodations for others to be able to take care of these other ministerial duties. That’s the balancing act that I think both the state of Kentucky and all state legislators, as well as the Congress has to do. And there’s a bill out there that will do that, and I think that would be taken care of.

JARRETT: Well, but if that doesn’t happen then we’re back to square one.

SANTORUM: I agree.

JARRETT: And look, a lot of people, Senator, say when she took the job, she swore to uphold the laws, and we rely on government officials to uphold and obey and enforce the laws. And so, again I come back to the question of, maybe she’s just one of those individuals that shouldn’t have this job.

SANTORUM: Well, again, what does the law say? The law in Kentucky defines marriage as between a man and a woman. The Supreme Court said, well, that’s invalidated. Historically, when the court acts, you have this issue as to how broad is the court’s effect and what is the impact? And Justice Roberts, for example, in this court decision said that the court acted unconstitutionally. So the question is, when a court acts unconstitutionally, what is the obligation of the other branches of government? Now, I would say you’re right, that a county clerk may be taking a little too far, but it is the obligation, in my opinion, of the Congress and of the next president — certainly not this one — to counter a court that is abusing its constitutional authority.

JARRETT: Well, you have do it legally. I mean, do it with a constitutional amendment, to amend the equal protection clause to say it doesn’t apply to gay marriage. I mean, that’s one of the ways you could do it.

SANTORUM: Well, I don’t think you need a constitutional amendment to fix this problem. When the court acts wrongly, it shouldn’t take the other branches of government to have to get a constitutional amendment passed when five people can amend the Constitution. When the court does something beyond its bounds, it is incumbent upon the Congress. And I’ve done it. I was the author of the partial-birth abortion bill, and when that bill was found unconstitutional, we passed another bill and said, ‘Court, you’re wrong,’ and they backed down. And that’s what Congress has to do.

Here’s the CNN clip:

CHRIS CUOMO: We just learned Rowan County, Kentucky, that county clerk’s office has issued marriage licenses to at least one same-sex couple. More, I believe, will be issued today — your reaction?

RICK SANTORUM: Well, there’s lots of issues surrounding this, and the first one is, why are we putting someone in jail because they have a religious objection —

CUOMO: Let’s get to that in a second. Do you think it’s a good development that this county clerk’s office is issuing same-sex marriage licenses?

SANTORUM: Well, I would say this, that we have a situation where the United States Supreme Court, in my opinion, acted unconstitutionally. And it’s not just mine, it’s also Justice Roberts’ opinion. He said the court acted without any constitutional basis to do this.

CUOMO: But that was the minority opinion, and the Supreme Court decided 5-4 is now law, that same-sex marriage is now legal, so that is the law as it stands.

SANTORUM: Well, what I would say is that what the obligation of, I believe, of a president, of a Congress when a court acts unconstitutionally — and I believe they have acted unconstitutionally — is to use the power that is inherent in the Constitution that they call checks and balances. When a president acts unconstitutionally, the court can slap down the president. What happens if the Supreme Court acts unconstitutionally? Who gets the opportunity to challenge them? And according to —

CUOMO: So you think it’s Kim Davis? Do you think it’s a county clerk in Rowan County, Kentucky?

SANTORUM: Well, I would agree that what Kim Davis did, in my opinion, was heroic, and she suffered the consequences from it. I think putting her in jail was ridiculous, an extreme position. But you know what? That’s sometimes what it takes, for people to stand up and conduct civil disobedience because the law is unjust, to suffer the consequences of that. And so I commend her for actually standing up for her principles. I think it’s really incumbent upon the Congress, though, and the legislature of Kentucky, to step up, and particularly the Congress, to step up and check the court, and the president to check the court when it goes beyond its legal authority.

Thomas Valentine is a researcher for APIA and a junior at the Franciscan University of Steubenville.