It’s a group developed by top Democratic leaders in the House of Representatives, designed to help religious leaders gain influence over the federal government and to encourage religious organizations to become involved in electoral politics, threatening the integrity of the separation of church and state.
In a time of expanding financial kickbacks to churches through the White House Office of Faith Based Initatives, this Democratic organization is facilitating meetings between top Democratic office holders and the heads of churches that may be taking government money.
The organization’s first director, Burns Strider, has gone through the revolving door of Washington D.C. insider politics to become a lobbyist and then to gain personal profit from advising Democrats how to use religious organizations to increase their political power.
If you’re interested in finding out more about this organization’s operations, you may find its name, but you won’t find much of anything else. It’s called the Democratic Faith Working Group.
The DFWG does not maintain a web site. Neither does it post information about its activities on any other Democratic Party web site. We know that Jim Clyburn leads the organization, and that Congressman Silvestre Reyes is a member, but what other members of Congress are involved is a mystery. The group operates largely in secret.
What religious leaders are given access to the channels of power opened by the Democratic Faith Working Group, and how do they use that power? When does the group meet? What are the government policies that the group helps to create?
As of now, we can’t know any of this, because the members of the Democratic Faith Working Group aren’t talking. We have to take as a matter of blind faith that the group is not involved in unethical and unconstitutional dealings – and in a democratic society, blind faith just isn’t good enough.