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In a discussion during tonight's O'Reilly Factor on Fox News Channel regarding President Trump's executive order limiting travel from seven Muslim-majority countries, former Democrat Party Congressman Dennis Kucinich whipped out a pocket Constitution and said that the First Amendment does no allow religious tests.
It amazes me, when they think it supports their argument, how the normally anti-constitution Democrats become strict constitutionalists at the drop of a dime. However, the misinterpretation of the First Amendment by Kucinich was not only a gross error on the part of the former Congressman, but insulting to those of us who recognize the importance of the original principles penned by the Founding Fathers over two centuries ago.
The term "religious test" only appears in the U.S. Constitution once, in Article VI., and is specifically in reference to persons holding a position in government. According to the clause, in order to hold office in the federal government no religious test may be applied.
When it comes to immigration, Article I, Section 9 begins with a clause authorizing the Congress to use legislation to prohibit persons from coming into the United States, be it by way of importation (which led to Congress passing legislation outlawing the Atlantic Slave Trade), or by way of migration (immigration). The clause provides no limitations. Congress can prohibit any person for any reason from immigrating into the United States.
President Trump's executive order also puts into action Federal immigration law Section 1182(f), which states: “Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate”
Trump's executive order references that law, among others, in the text of his order.
As for Kucinich's claim that the First Amendment says no religious tests, the claim is untrue.
The First Amendment begins, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."
What that means is that Congress has no authority to pass any law declaring that the United States has an established religion, language designed to protect us against becoming a theocracy (like a Muslim country) or becoming something like the European countries of the time where the monarchs and church were in bed with each other, sharing power in a totalitarian-style of government.
The second part of the clause disallows Congress from passing laws that interferes with one's ability to worship. It has nothing to do with immigration. If anything, the "separation of church and state laws" we've seen, like outlawing prayer in schools, are more of a violation of that clause than is a travel ban of people from seven countries that harbor terrorists, fund terrorists, and promotes terrorism.
-- Political Pistachio Conservative News and Commentary