Democratic leaders on a key House committee are moving to strike the language requiring witnesses to agree to tell the truth “so help you God” in a change that has surprised even some Republicans.
Draft rules in the House Committee on Natural Resources obtained by Fox News show the phrase in red and in brackets, meaning it is to be removed.
Previously, witnesses were required to affirm an oath reading, “Do you solemnly swear or affirm, that the testimony that you are about to give is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you, God?”
The proposed new oath deletes “so help you God?” and adds “under penalty of law.” It would read, “Do you solemnly swear or affirm, under penalty of law, that the testimony that you are about to give is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?”
The Hill also covered the potential change.
Oaths with the phrase “so help you God” are common in the House and Senate. Last year’s televised hearings with Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford included the phrase.
“It is incredible, but not surprising, that the Democrats would try to remove God from committee proceedings in one of their first acts in the majority," House GOP Conference Chairwoman Liz Cheney (Wyo.) told Fox News. "They really have become the party of Karl Marx.”
Democratic Rep. Raul Grijalva (Ariz.) chairs the committee.
Michael Foust is a freelance writer. Visit his blog, MichaelFoust.com.
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Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, The Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.