The clash of two American values -- religious freedom and freedom from discrimination –- didn’t seem so huge when a broad coalition of religious and civil rights representatives got together in a room in 1993. While starting from different ends of the political spectrum, this group came together to push for a new law, The Religious Freedom Restoration Act, meant to protect the religious practice of all faiths, no matter how small. RFRA became the law of the land. But just a few years and a huge cultural shift later, the law was found to be only applicable at the federal level, and the coalition could not find a way to balance religious freedom with the civil rights of LGBT persons and women. That rift continues today as we continue to ask what does it mean to be free to exercise one’s religion? We hear from the people who were in that room in 1993 – and now are living with the consequences of their efforts.
Our friends at PolitiFact have sorted through a year of lies, fibs, exaggerations, fabrications and outright falsehoods to find the worst of the worst. PolitiFact’s Editor Angie Drobnic Holan joins us to reveal the 2017 lie of the year.
Congress is considering changes to the way it handles sexual harassment complaints after its current rules have been called onerous by critics. We take stock of what might change with Patrick Terpstra of the Scripps Washington Bureau, and we speak with the lawmaker who helped shape the system, retired Rep. Chris Shays, who says it’s imperfect but is a vast improvement over what came before.