House Prayer Stirs Controversy
A prayer said on the House floor today by state Rep. Stephanie Borowicz (R-Clinton) is resulting in significant pushback from Democratic House members.
Borowicz, a first term GOP representative and wife of a pastor, thanked Jesus and President Donald Trump in her prayer for his “unequivocal support” for Israel, on the same day the state House sworn Movita Johnson-Harrell (D-Philadelphia), into office, who became the first Muslim woman elected to the general assembly.
“Lord, thank you that he stands beside Israel, unequivocally,” Borowicz said of Trump.
Johnson-Harrell said in a statement to the Pennsylvania Capital-Star’s Stephen Caruso that the prayer from Borowicz was “highly offensive” and it “blatantly represented the islamophobia” that she believes still exists in some leaders.
NEWS: Just sworn-in Rep. Movita Johnson-Harrell called Rep. Stephanie Borowicz’s prayer to start session “divisive and highly offensive to me, my guests and other members of the House.” @PennCapitalStar pic.twitter.com/3BDTa26fHU
— Stephen Caruso (@StephenJ_Caruso) March 25, 2019
Some Democratic members vocally objected during the prayer, with Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny) appearing to hurry up Borowicz to finish speaking.
After the prayer, Turzai asked that House members “craft a prayer that is respectful of all religious belief.”
House Minority Leader Frank Dermody denounced the prayer on the floor.
According to the AP, Borowicz “insists she did nothing wrong.”