Resolution Supporting a WSDCC Secular First Amendment Caucus (pending)

Progressive Caucus Resolution 2017-03


WHEREAS the First Amendment to the Constitution states “… Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”; and

WHEREAS the Constitution of the United States, Article VI, paragraph 3, states “… no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States;” and

WHEREAS the Washington State Democratic Central Committee (WSDCC) has established forums, known as Constituency Caucuses, for various interest groups, which may be based upon shared religion, or culture, or ethnicity, or gender, or political philosophy, or upon several other demographic variables; and

WHEREAS when asked to state their religious preference, those persons identifying as “Secular”, or “Non-Religious,” or “Atheist,” or “Agnostic,” or “None,” or other and similar descriptors, constitute over 22% of the United States population, and at least 28% of the Democratic Party, and as such constitute a significant demographic group within the Democratic Party; and

WHEREAS this Secular group is especially concerned with the frequent lack of enforcement of the Establishment clause of the First Amendment guarantees, and this historical and increasing non-enforcement negatively impacts the Secular community; and

WHEREAS there currently exists within the WSDCC no forum in which those of no religious belief or practice may jointly meet to put forth and discuss issues that most immediately affect their First Amendment Constitutional rights from their shared perspective; now

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we, the Washington State Democratic Central Committee (WSDCC), in order to treat the Secular community on a par with other communities within our Party, do hereby call for the WSDCC to add a Secular First Amendment Caucus to its current Constituency Caucuses and to support it in the same ways and to the same extent it currently supports all the other Constituency Caucuses, with the same privileges and responsibilities as all Constituency Caucuses it now supports; and

THEREFORE BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that it is the opinion and sense of the WSDCC that a Secular First Amendment Caucus should be established at the national level of the Democratic Party, and we urge the national organization to establish same, and encourage the several State and Territorial Parties to establish their own Secular First Amendment Caucuses.

Submitted to the WSDCC for consideration at its April 21-22, 2017 meeting in Walla Walla, WA on March 30, 2017 by Elaine Phelps

Disposition: pending

____________________, Chair

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