The Frank R. Wolf International Religious Freedom Act of 2016 provides a framework for advancing religious freedom as a U.S. foreign policy imperative. 21Wilberforce presents the 115th Congress International Religious Freedom Scorecard as a measure of progress made toward that end. The Scorecard helps increase Congressional awareness of international religious freedom issues, encourages legislators to take bold action in support of this cause, and publicly recognizes the work of religious freedom champions in Congress.
“The U.S. has historically been seen as a beacon for religious freedom,” says 21Wilberforce President Randel Everett. “The International Religious Freedom Congressional Scorecard is a tool to promote this universal and fundamental freedom.”
48 legislators (30 Democrats and 16 Republicans) are recognized as “Notable Leaders” for the 115th Congress. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Representative Jim McGovern (D-MA) earned top scores for the 115th Congress International Religious Freedom Scorecard. As was true with the 114th Congress, overall scoring for the 115th Congress shows bipartisan support for international religious freedom issues.
Members were evaluated on their public engagement with international religious freedom based on their sponsorship of bills, resolutions, and amendments, as well as related caucus and commission work and votes in the Senate and the House.
Out of 115 international religious freedom items scored during the 115th Congress, six came to a vote (two in the Senate and four in the House), all passed unanimously or with an overwhelming majority and were then signed into law. These include the Elie Wiesel Genocide and Atrocities Prevention Act of 2017, the Iraq and Syria Genocide Relief and Accountability Act of 2018, and the North Korean Human Rights Reauthorization Act of 2017.
This 21Wilberforce project was made possible by the generous support of Christianity Today International. The International Religious Freedom Congressional Scorecard is an educational tool and should not be perceived as an effort to support or endorse specific legislation or candidates. Read the scorecard online or download at https://IRFscorecard.org.
Lou Ann Sabatier