Activists ask 2012 candidates to sign religious freedom pledge

An advocacy organization for persecuted Christians has asked the 2012 presidential candidates to sign a pledge stating they would make religious freedom a priority in the United States and overseas if they win the White House.
Open Doors USA joined with religious freedom activist Tom Farr of Georgetown University to draft the pledge, which was unveiled Monday (Nov. 28). As of Wednesday, former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., was the sole signatory among the candidates.
“The right of religious freedom must be applied equally to all religious communities in America, including Christians, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, and others,” reads the pledge.
“At the same time, religious freedom does not mandate belief, but protects the right not to believe.”
The pledge calls for the candidate, should he or she become president, to nominate federal judges who support religious liberty. It also asks candidates to make religious freedom promotion a foreign policy priority and urges the appointment of a religious freedom ambassador “who is a person of stature, experienced in matters of religious freedom and diplomacy.”