After threats to tax religious nonprofits bombed, Beto floats another way to force LGBT values

(Screenshot from NBC News)

Fresh off the controversy of saying religious institutions should lose their tax-exempt status if they don’t endorse gay marriage, Robert Francis “Beto” O’Rourke is citing the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to say churches must support LGBT rights.

Amid the backlash, O’Rourke backed off on his earlier position but continued to pander to the LGBT demographic by saying on Sunday that churches have a legal obligation not to discriminate against gay and transgender people.

In effect, the former Democratic three-term Texas congressman is trying to walk the fence.

“I want to make sure that we enforce those laws,” O’Rourke told MSNBC’s Ayman Mohyeldin. “I’m going to make sure those continue to be our values in this country, that we uphold the law, but that we also respect the freedom to pursue those religious beliefs as you see fit.”

Mohyeldin, who noted that some members of O’Rourke’s party disagree with him, then asked the 2020 Democratic presidential contender to clarify his position on his tax-exemption status position.

“Do you believe that religious organizations in this country should be denied tax benefits, tax breaks, exemptions if they do not agree to perform same-sex marriages?” Mohyeldin asked.

“The answer to the direct question that you just asked is no,” O’Rourke replied. “I see tremendous value in what religious institutions do in this country, not just for their congregants and parishioners but what they do in our communities.”

Of course, when Democrats speak of “communities,” there’s a good chance they are talking about illegal immigrants — which is precisely what O’Rourke was speaking of.

“Annunciation House, a Catholic charity in El Paso which provides shelter to asylum seekers and refugees, has facilitated the reunification of these separated families on our border,” he said. “Of course, they should be able to do that work and, of course, any one of us should be able to worship as we please, believe what we like.”

“But the moment that any nonprofit organization in this country offers services in the public sphere — higher education is a great example, or a health care clinic or hospital — then they must follow the laws of this country, including the law that prohibits discrimination based on any difference, of race, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation, which is the question I was asked at that CNN town hall,” O’Rourke added.

It was at this point that the candidate cited the “longstanding” Civil Rights Act.

Social media users were quick to point out the error in O’Rourke’s ways … here’s a sampling of responses from Twitter:

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