WASHINGTON (RNS) — The independent religious freedom watchdog whose future was in question in recent months has been reauthorized as part of an ominbus bill President Trump signed Friday (Dec. 20).

The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom received funding of $3.5 million annually for the next three years after members of Congress included revised legislation about it in the 1,700-plus-page bill that they approved this week.

After Congress had adopted the bill including the authorization, USCIRF Chair Tony Perkins said he was grateful for the bipartisan support of members such as Sens. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and Bob Mendendez, D-N.J., who created a new version of legislation after pulling the first one.

“At a time when freedom of religion is under assault worldwide, it’s encouraging

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