Advocacy group demands Trump shut down evangelical advisory board

Advocacy group demands Trump shut down evangelical advisory board
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A group advocating for the separation of church and state has issued a letter urging the White House to disband President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump faces high stakes in meeting with Erdoğan amid impeachment drama Democrats worry they don't have right candidate to beat Trump Trump threatening to fire Mulvaney: report MORE's Evangelical Advisory Council, a group of Christian leaders who advise the president.

Americans United for Separation of Church and State argued in a letter addressed to White House counsel Don McGahn that members of one religion are given unfair access to the president and the president's council operates in secret, The Washington Post reported.

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“It is clear that the President’s Evangelical Advisory Board is doing substantive work with the Trump administration behind closed doors — without any sunlight for the public to understand how and why decisions are being made,” the letter states.

“We are tired of watching him give unprecedented access and influence to one religious group. And we’re tired of the secrecy. We’re asking them to shut down,” the group's president and CEO, Rachel Laser, told The Post.

The newspaper noted that the council has advised Trump on issues such as tax reform and judicial appointments.

Whether or not the council currently functions remains in question.

A spokesman for the committee told The Post that the council now exists mostly in name only.

“The truth is, there actually isn’t a board. This is slang language that has carried over from the campaign into the administration,” Johnnie Moore said. “There is no formal faith advisory board of any sort at the White House.”

Trump won the support of evangelical Republicans during the GOP primary, crediting them in part for his victory over his rivals.

One member of the council resigned last year after the president's comments on violence caused by white nationalists in Charlottesville, Va., citing "a deepening conflict in values" with the administration.