WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - Almost exactly a year after President Donald Trump first attempted to institute a Muslim travel ban, the country has a new international religious freedom ambassador. The new ambassador walked away from his job leading the Sunflower State to step into his new role for the United States.
Hand on the Bible, former Kansas Governor Sam Brownback became America’s new religious freedom ambassador. “With this administration behind us, and us pushing hard, we will see the expansion of religious liberty around the world, mark my words,” he said.
President Trump re-nominated Brownback -- a Catholic -- earlier this month, after Congress refused to sign-off on the assignment last year. Last week, Vice President Mike Pence cast the tie-breaking vote, and administered the oath of office.
“I know that you will carry this task from your heart,” Pence said to Brownback during the swearing-in ceremony, “and you will represent America with great distinction.”
Asked how he felt to finally have the job, Brownback chuckled before he said, “you know, it’s a real level of excitement.”
Brownback's new role will be to fight religious oppression around the world. Critics, especially those on the political left, worry he'll focus on Christians rather than those who belong to other faiths, or have none at all.
“I’ve had those sorts of criticisms before and it’s just not true,” said Brownback, “I’m going to focus on people of faith or people who don’t have any faith at all, that are being persecuted for the lack of faith.” He added, “that’s what the nature of the job is about.”
Last year's annual report compiled under the previous ambassador concluded that religious freedom is on the decline globally. Asked whether he expects his first report to reach the same conclusion, Brownback said he hopes not. “And if it does, then I haven’t done my job,” he said.
Brownback tells us his first trip will be to Iraq to address religious-based genocide, but first he wants to draw up a global game plan