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Trump’s allies may still rule Europe – Poland shows what’s at stake

Sunday 8 November 2020, by siawi3

Source: https://mailchi.mp/opendemocracy/trumps-allies-may-still-rule-europe-poland-shows-whats-at-stake?e=955b1076cc

Trump’s allies may still rule Europe – Poland shows what’s at stake

7.11.20

In the biggest demonstrations in Poland’s recent history, 100,000 protesters flooded the streets last week to resist a court ruling that has imposed a near-total ban on abortion.

But this is not only a Polish story. Women’s rights in Poland have come into the crosshairs of the powerful US Christian conservative ‘legal army’, the American Center for Law and Justice. And it’s led by Trump’s personal lawyer Jay Sekulow. In the recent Polish constitutional court case, Sekulow’s group submitted arguments supporting the ban of abortion in cases of fatal foetal anomalies.

As the world watches the US election, you’d think that Trump’s friends would have other things to do. But Trump is just a part of a much bigger, well-resourced, global backlash against women’s and LGBTIQ rights.

Last week, we revealed the “staggering” scale of such spending for the first time. Since 2007, dozens of US Christian right groups, many of them linked to the Trump administration, have spent at least $280 million of ‘dark money’ around the world. Sekulow’s group has spent more money in Europe than anywhere else (outside the US).

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Special investigation: US Christian right ‘dark money’

Revealed: $280m ‘dark money’ spent by US Christian right groups globally. Lawmakers say the scale of spending – particularly by Trump’s lawyers and allies – is “alarming” and call for urgent action to increase transparency. Claire Provost and Nandini Archer

Interactive: Explore US Christian right ‘dark money’ spending globally $280 million in ‘dark money,’ 28 organisations, seven different regions – the US Christian right’s global influence visualised. Mark Brough, Inge Snip, Claire Provost and Lou Ferreira

Revealed: Trump’s top lawyer funds Putin-linked religious lobbyists in Russia. Jay Sekulow’s group has donated $3.3 million to a Russian evangelical organisation with close ties to the Kremlin, an openDemocracy and Mother Jones investigation reveals. Tatev Hovhannisyan

US Christian anti-LGBT ‘hate group’ spent more than $20m in Europe. Lawsuits against COVID-hit UK councils and venues could set “menacing” precedents for US-style ‘religious freedom’ arguments, rights groups fear. Nandini Archer and Claire Provost

Exclusive: US Christian right pours more than $50m into Africa. Conservative groups increase their spending and activity in what critics call an “opportunistic use of Africans” for US-style culture wars. Lydia Namubiru and Khatondi Soita

US Christian right group hosts anti-LGBT training for African politicians. “Hate group” Family Watch International is teaching high-level politicians across Africa how to campaign against sex education and LGBT rights. Kerry Cullinan, Zarina Geloo and Tuyeimo Haidula

US groups linked to COVID conspiracies pour millions of ‘dark money’ into Latin America. Some Christian right groups have denied that coronavirus cases exist, while others have claimed the virus was deliberately made by China. Diana Cariboni and Isabella Cota

Undercover with the US conservatives who trained Mike Pence. This is how the architects of America’s culture wars are trying to export their tactics to Europe. Adam Ramsay and Joni Hess

Faith leaders condemn US Christian right groups ‘exporting hate’. Progressive Christians denounce right-wing groups for denying LGBTIQ rights, spreading misinformation and “interfering” in foreign countries. Lou Ferreira and Teddy Wilson