Why Biden Tapped a Pioneering Queer Rabbi to Advise Him on Religious Freedom

Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum tells Haaretz she can’t wait to get started on ‘the last bipartisan entity in Washington that actually functions,’ balancing the new role with her day job running the world’s largest LGBTQ congregation

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For Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum, the announcement of her appointment to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom represented a second chance to do the job she reluctantly walked away from more than a year ago. 

The Biden White House announced last week that she had been named to the panel responsible for monitoring and reporting on religious freedom overseas. Back in December 2019, Kleinbaum had been “very excited” when she was named to the bipartisan commission – whose members are selected by both the president and Congress – by Sen. Chuck Schumer.

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