01.26.15

Senator Lankford Named Co-Chairman of Congressional Prayer Caucus

WASHINGTON, DC— Rep. J. Randy Forbes (R-VA), founder and co-chairman of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, today named Senator James Lankford (R-OK) co-chairman of the Prayer Caucus. The Caucus works to protect the fundamental human right of religious freedom and guards the right of individuals to pray and practice their faith freely.

This announcement comes the day before Religious Freedom Day, a time to recognize the important role of religious freedom in our nation’s founding. Each President has made a Religious Freedom Day proclamation for the past 24 years.

“The Congressional Prayer Caucus has worked successfully to advocate for and protect values that are fundamental to the fabric of our nation, and I’m honored to serve as co-chairman,” said Lankford. “This Caucus has worked together on a bipartisan basis to preserve the presence of religion, faith, and morality in the marketplace of ideas. It is vitally important that Congress respects these values in public policy, as well as culture.”

Lankford becomes the first senator to join the Caucus since its founding in 2005, making the Caucus bicameral. Lankford first joined the Caucus after his election to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010.

“As the Congressional Prayer Caucus continues to expand by including both Members of the House and Senate, I am pleased to announce Senator James Lankford will now be serving as our co-chairman,” said Forbes. “Throughout his service in Congress, Senator Lankford has demonstrated a staunch commitment to protecting the constitutional right of religious freedom, and fighting for the ability of all Americans to freely exercise and live by their religious beliefs. Freedom of conscience is part of who we are as a nation, and I look forward to working together with Senator Lankford to preserve this fundamental freedom.”

The Congressional Prayer Caucus exists to recognize the vital role that prayer by individuals of all faiths has played in uniting us as a people, and in making us a more generous, more cooperative, and more forgiving people than we might otherwise have been; and also to support Members in using the legislative process to continue to protect religious freedom so that our nation may continue to draw upon and benefit from this essential freedom.

During the 113th Congress, Forbes and former Rep. Mike McIntyre (D-NC) served as the co-chairmen. For the 114th Congress, the Prayer Caucus maintains a bipartisan group of more than 80 Members. The Caucus started in 2005 when Forbes gathered a small group of Members of the House who began meeting in Room 219 of the Capitol to pray for our nation. 

On January 6th, Senator Lankford was sworn in as the 18th Senator from the State of Oklahoma. He will serve on the Senate Republican Whip Team for the 114th Congress, as well as the following four Committees: the Committee on Appropriations, the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, the Select Committee on Intelligence, and the Committee on Indian Affairs.

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