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Hats In The Ring: Early Questions For Presidential Contenders

Another column: another admission:  At least once a day, I look at “The Drudge Report.” One thing Drudge does is slavishly follow the ins and outs of the potential presidential campaigns of Republicans and Democrats. 

A lot is going on. As I write this, it looks like Jeb Bush, Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum, Mitt Romney, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey are “in” for the Republicans, but U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) and U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) are “out.”

Out Of Gas In Mustang

Steve Green, president of the Hobby Lobby craft store chain, isn’t always willing to put his money where his mouth is, at least when it comes to defending his sectarian agenda in court.

Green, who won a huge victory for the Religious Right last year at the U.S. Supreme Court in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, which curtailed employees’ access to birth control under the Affordable Care Act, is out to indoctrinate public school students through a curriculum that claims the Bible is literally true.

Religious Freedom Report: Atheists Are On The Rise, But So Is Persecution

A new report by the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) identifies atheists, agnostics and other non-theists as a “target minority” for persecution. This global crackdown is occurring concurrently with a rise in the number of non-theists; according to the report, a full 13 percent of the world’s population now identifies as atheist, with another 23 percent identifying as non-religious.

Americans United Welcomes Okla. School District’s Decision To Drop Biased Bible Curriculum

Church-State Watchdog Group Had Warned That Planned Elective Class Backed By Hobby Lobby Owner Violates U.S. Constitution

An Oklahoma school district has decided not to implement a Bible curriculum designed by Steve Green, owner of the Hobby Lobby chain of craft stores, that critics said was biased in favor of fundamentalist Christianity.

Earlier this year, Americans United warned Mustang Public Schools officials that the curriculum was problematic and its use in schools might spark litigation.

Utah Sect Cites Hobby Lobby In Child Labor Case

A federal court has ruled that the Supreme Court’s ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores exempts a member of the Fundamentalist Church of Latter-day Saints (FLDS) from testifying in a child labor case.

According to Time magazine, Vergel Steed told the court that he made a religious vow to never publicly discuss the sect’s internal affairs and revealing information about the group, including the identities of its leaders and its governance, would violate his sincerely held religious beliefs.