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HomeIllinois NewsFamily group lobbyists resign as pressure builds over hate speech resolution

Family group lobbyists resign as pressure builds over hate speech resolution



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SPRINGFIELD – Illinois Family Institute continues to appeal to state lawmakers this week on issues of importance to their group, despite growing obstacles.

Last week, a group of Democrat Jewish House members introduced a resolution condemning the prolife, traditional values organization as a "hate group," and called for the State Police to investigate them. The resolution also called for the group's lobbyists to be banned from the Capitol until the State Police investigation was completed. 

During one of the most intense pro-abortion, anti-traditional values legislative sessions in years, Illinois Family Institute's registered lobbyists Ralph Rivera and Molly Malone resigned March 25th, the Secretary of State's records say. The two remain on record as lobbyists for the Illinois Right to Life and the Illinois Coalition of Non-Public Schools. 

For the rest of the session, Illinois Family Institute volunteers will be speaking with state lawmakers on the group's behalf, executive director David E. Smith told Illinois Review Wednesday.

"IFI and [its sister organization] Illinois Family Action board members will be volunteering — picking up the slack through May 31st.  Pastor James Pittman Jr. and some folk from his church are there today on the abortion bills," Smith said. "We will augment that with staff when needed. Kathy [Valente of IFI's office] is there today with some Concerned Women for America warriors fighting marijuana legalization. We have experts from Colorado down there with them." 

Illinois Family Institute's lobbyists resigned four days after the group posted a commentary comparing policy views of the Nazis to Democrats. The comparison highly offended State Rep. Jonathan Carroll, a Democrat from Northbrook. Within days, ten members of the Democrat Jewish Caucus signed onto a resolution calling for IFI and its lobbyists to be banned from the Capitol. 

The resolution also criticizes the pro-life rally co-sponsored by Illinois Family Institute in March that so packed the Capitol, Capitol security restricted access for a short time until the rally crowd – estimated by Capitol security to be in excess of 4000 – filtered out of the building. The Caucus called for Capitol security measures to be re-visited. 

The question has then turned to how Republicans will vote on the proposed resolution if it gets to the House and/or Senate floor for a vote. Since last Friday, three more Democrats have joined the resolution sponsorship and the measure has been assigned to Rules Committee. The members of the Rules Committee choose to either ignore the resolution or assign it to a House committee. There, testimony for and against the measure is heard, and a vote taken. If the bill passes committee, it proceeds to the chamber floor.  The same in the Illinois Senate – and on to the Governor. 

Behind the scenes, Republican lawmakers are saying colleagues are hinting they may feel compelled vote to support the resolution and side against Illinois Family Institute. That would be unacceptable for former State Rep. Jeanne Ives, who said earlier this week she could not support any Republican that votes for the resolution. Since Ives nearly defeated Governor Rauner in the 2018 IL GOP gubernatorial primary, she's viewed as a leader by the state's conservatives. 

One Republican that publicly challenged Illinois Family Institute is State Rep. David McSweeney (R-Barrington Hills), who, according to the Chicago Sun Times, told IFI to remove the comparison piece from its website. He went on in the story to say, “It’s inappropriate and I told him he had a good day today, filled up the Capitol with people. I opposed two bills that are coming out of the Senate. Why screw it up with something like this? Because it just looks so bad. And he took it down.”

McSweeney said there is “zero place in discourse ever [for Nazism], except to condemn it.”

For Illinois Family Institute, however, comparing Democrats to Nazis was a condemnation of both, IFI contributor Laurie Higgins said on Illinois Review's comment section.

"As I wrote today, that analogy is neither reckless nor new. Nor is it anti-Semitic as the gang of ten bizarrely claim in order to silence those who expose the similarities. Carroll doth protest waaay too much, methinks. Lying lawmakers in Springfield, IL have just shown Illinoisans the totalitarian stripes on their dark underbellies–again."


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  1. Why did they resign??? Stop allowing the democrat police state from treating you like you are guilty. Everyone at IFI is innocent until proven guilty. I have every confidence you all will be found innocent.
    We are all presumed innocent under our constitution, whether you are president of the US or any other citizen. Arrogant state legislators can’t convict because that’s not their job, all they do is deceive. You will receive exoneration needed. We are all innocent until proven guilty with evidence of wrongdoing, even in the Socialist Republic of Illinois. This is persecution by state legislators trying to coverup the holocaust of 61 million babies.
    Today the Holocaust is viewed as the emblematic manifestation of absolute evil, an evil just like the murder of 61 million unborn and sometimes born pain feeling babies. How can anyone kill a baby for a living?? Satan must live in them…..

  2. The Democrat Caucus is traitorous, they seek to stop free speech and deny religious freedom in violation of the Illinois constitution’s Bill of Rights. The democrats need to read the Illinois constitution’s Bill of Rights and OBEY THEM!
    IFI, remember 2 Timothy 3:12 teaches, “Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.”
    When evil is your enemy, you know you are righteous…. Political correctness is a tool designed by deceivers to silence people whose abortion arguments democrats can’t refute. Truth is Hate to those who Hate the Truth!

  3. I think IFI is completely in the right here, both in thoughts and practice. I pray they don’t give in to this malicious attempt to silence the things they stand for (or against(. I am truly disappointed at the cowardice of this lobbyists!

  4. Read the BIO of the man who introduced the BILL http://www.ilga.gov/house/Rep.asp?MemberID=2745
    Thats his MOJO!!
    Biography: Health care attorney; B.A. from University of Illinois-Urbana; J.D. from Northern Illinois University; former health care attorney for Illinois Office of the Governor and General Counsel for the Illinois Department of Public Health, helping to implement the Affordable Care Act and Medical Cannabis Program in Illinois; board Member, Anti-Defamation League and Board of Trustees of Equip for Equality; married (wife, Sonya) with two children.

  5. Democrat hypocrisy on display again, The democraps always say healthcare is a right, but deny babies the right. Next on the list will be old people in nursing homes, remember if you will muslim Obama’s comments on this very subject. It was during the Obamacare debates