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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Rubio to push 'religious freedom' bill

4

April

Marco Rubio has a project for his remaining months in the U.S. Senate: Pushing a “religious freedom” bill.

“It’s a priority for us,” Rubio told the Christian-focused World News Group. “We can’t impose religious liberty, but we have a moral and, quite frankly, a national security obligation to make sure we’re a voice on behalf of it around the world.”

The bipartisan legislation was introduced last year in the House as the Frank R. Wolf International Religious Freedom Act.

“It would mandate religious freedom training for foreign service officers, require annual CPC designations (including for nonstate actors such as Boko Haram and ISIS), and elevate the bureaucratic standing of the State Department’s IRF office, increasing staff and resources to address what many see as a proliferating global crisis,” according to World.

But the publication said the bill faces State Department opposition to giving the IRF, or International Religious Freedom Roundtable, “a higher bureaucratic status.”

The House bill could come up for a vote this month and Rubio says he will introduce the companion.

As a presidential candidate, Rubio often highlighted his faith.

[Last modified: Monday, April 4, 2016 11:07am]

    

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