Right after President Trump signed his executive order to "vigorously enforce federal law's robust protections for religious freedom" on Thursday, the American Civil Liberties Union vowed to fight it in court. Then it read the order.
"After careful review of the order's text we have determined that the order does not meaningfully alter the ability of religious institutions or individuals to intervene in the political process," said ACLU executive director Anthony Romero in a statement, dryly. "President Trump's prior assertion that he wished to 'totally destroy' the Johnson Amendment with this order has proven to be a textbook case of 'fake news,'" he added, and then got a dig in at the disappointment of conservative evangelical Christian leaders to the reduced scope of Trump's order: "What President Trump did today was merely provide a faux sop to religious conservatives and kick the can down the road on religious exemptions on reproductive health-care services." If this order "triggers any official government action at all," Romero concluded, "we will see Trump in court, again.”