U.S. Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid called on his Republican counterpart, Bill Frist, to withdraw from a telecast organized by a Christian group that implies Democrats are blocking judicial nominees on religious grounds.
The Kentucky church event April 24, called ``Justice Sunday,'' seeks to stop ``the filibuster against people of faith,'' referring to judicial nominations made by President George W. Bush that have been blocked by Democrats since 2003.
``To say he's going to participate in this event in Kentucky is really beyond the pale,'' Reid, a Nevada Democrat, told reporters today. ``I really am upset at anyone suggesting that we are against people of faith. I would hope that Senator Frist would rise above this and not participate."
Here's more of Reid's statement, via Atrios
"I am disappointed that in an attempt to hide what the debate is really about, Senator Frist would exploit religion like this. Religion to me is a very personal thing. I have been a religious man all my adult life. My wife and I have lived our lives and raised our children according to the morals and values taught by the faith to which we prescribe. No one has the right to judge mine or anyone else’s personal commitment to faith and religion.
God isn’t partisan.
As His children, he does ask us to do our very best and treat each other with kindness. Republicans have crossed a line today. America is better than this and Republicans need to remember that. This is a democracy, not a theocracy. We are people of faith, and in many ways are doing God’s work. But we represent all Americans, regardless of religion. Our founding fathers had the superior vision to separate Church and State in our democracy. It is a fundamental principle that has allowed our great, diverse nation to grow and flourish peacefully. Blurring the line between Church and State erodes our Constitution, and our democracy. It is a blatant abuse of power. Participating in something designed to incite divisiveness and encourage contention is unacceptable. I would hope that Sen. Frist will rise above something so beyond the pale."