|Tony Perkins can't stop lying.|
Tony Perkins of the Family Research added some spin to the situation:
Pouncing on the private nature of the meeting, everyone from Reuters to the Associated Press is casting doubt on the nature of the get-together, and whether -- in fact -- the Vatican actually invited the Davises to meet the Pontiff. Some reporters are now insisting it was a random encounter, which is laughable considering the amount of security involved in the Pope's visit. In a place like the Vatican Embassy, there's absolutely no way the two parties could have accidentally crossed paths. As Liberty Counsel explained, the Davises were actually transported to the meeting by van by the Vatican's own men. Kim was even asked to wear her hair up so that she'd be less recognizable.
Ultimately, the Davises ended up in a private room, where "no one else [was] present." When the Pope arrived, he stretched out his hands and encouraged Kim to "stay strong," something that wouldn't have made sense unless he was familiar with her case. Now, several days later, the Vatican's communications shop seems intent on giving the media a story where there is none. Pressed by reporters, Spokesman Federico Lombardi appeared to backtrack on the significance of the meeting, suggesting that no one should construe the invitation as an endorsement of Kim.
So Perkins is basically relying on the words of the Liberty Counsel, the organization whose credibility took a tremendous beating over this incident and a certain other false claim it made recently regarding a Peruvian rally in Davis's honor.
Other media reports have said that the meeting with Davis was not private because "'several dozen' people were present."
Next, Perkins seems to be saying that the Pope was aware of Davis' situation and implied that he was endorsing her stance:
But we can certainly construe the Pope's own comments as such! No amount of Vatican spin can change his actual words, which were: "Conscientious objection is a right that is a part of every human right. It is a right," Francis told reporters on the flight home. "And if a person does not allow others to be a conscientious objector, he denies a right. Conscientious objection must enter into every juridical structure because it is a right, a human right." Asked if that included government officials, the Pope (having just met Kim) replied, "It is a human right and if a government official is a human person, he has that right." In hindsight, we know the context of those remarks. To suggest that Francis's comments were somehow unrelated to Kim and her predicament is ludicrous.
But according to CBS News, a source in the Vatican said the others had set up the meeting with Davis. The source also said Pope was "blindsided" and "exploited" by the meeting with Davis and the meeting shouldn't have ever taken place. Even the Liberty Counsel head Mat Staver (Davis' attorney) pushed back against any idea that the Pope endorsed Davis's stance.
The Daily Beast pointed out other inconsistencies in Staver and the Liberty Counsel's claim about the Pope and Davis:
The inconsistencies with the Liberty Counsel’s story were infuriatingly apparent from go. For example, Staver told CBS that Francis definitely knew who Kim Davis was, before their meeting: “Pope Francis,” he said, “has been following the story of Kim Davis and obviously is very concerned about religious liberty, not just in the United States, but worldwide.” But in an interview with Time, Staver said that he didn't know if Francis knew who his client was, but he assumed the pope had heard of her because “her story has been published worldwide.”
Perkins then attacks the Associated Press for the recent article which called the Liberty Counsel a hate group and the Southern Poverty Law Center for making the designation:
Now, of course, the left-wing media is piling on with attacks on the Davis's attorneys at Liberty Counsel. In what can only be called irresponsible reporting, the AP's Claire Galofaro tried to discredit Mat Staver's organization by slapping the anti-Christian Southern Poverty Law Center's (SPLC) reckless "hate" label on the group. Of course, the only thing worse than trying to smear Liberty Counsel is using a thoroughly discredited organization to do it. The SPLC, as most conservatives know, was linked in federal court to the first case of domestic terrorism in Washington, D.C.
After inspiring the shooting at FRC, most Americans started to rethink the credibility of the so-called "civil rights" group. When the SPLC's bullying tactics were exposed, the FBI went so far as to remove links to the SPLC from its "hate crimes resource" page. The U.S. Army was next, distancing itself from the group's materials. Now, despite the SPLC's agenda of intimidation, the media is using the organization to bludgeon Liberty Counsel and Kim Davis. But instead of exposing any wrongdoing on their part, the media is only exposing its own hostility toward Christians. Which sadly, only furthers the extremism that's silencing religious freedom in the first place.
Of course Perkins didn't offer any links or any explanation of the claim that SPLC was "linked" to a case of domestic terrorism. He is referring to that awful near tragedy at the headquarters of his organization in 2013 when a demented young man, Floyd Corkins, attempted a mass shooting. Perkins and several anti-gay groups and sites were quick to blame SPLC for Corkins' actions. However, as it turned out, Corkins was being treated for a mental illness at the time of the shooting. At the time, FRC and the rest of the organizations pointing fingers at SPLC conveniently omitted Corkins' bad mental state.
Furthermore, Perkins told another fib. The FBI did not remove SPLC links from its webpage.
So Perkins' email is business as usual for the Family Research Council, i.e. the same junk which led SPLC to declare it to be a hate group as well as the Liberty Counsel.
Hat tip to Right Wing Watch.