In short, atheists aren’t going to be happy:
No one’s arguing that faith-based groups can’t do good work. They do and it’d be ignorant to say otherwise. But religious groups aren’t unique in that regard. This is a slap in the face to every non-theistic organization that helps the homeless or contributes to various charities.
Faith. Faith has always been a central part of the American story, and it has been a driving force of progress and justice throughout our history. We know that our nation, our communities, and our lives are made vastly stronger and richer by faith and the countless acts of justice and mercy it inspires. Faith-based organizations will always be critical allies in meeting the challenges that face our nation and our world — from domestic and global poverty, to climate change and human trafficking. People of faith and religious organizations do amazing work in communities across this country and the world, and we believe in lifting up and valuing that good work, and finding ways to support it where possible. We believe in constitutionally sound, evidence-based partnerships with faith-based and other non-profit organizations to serve those in need and advance our shared interests. There is no conflict between supporting faith-based institutions and respecting our Constitution, and a full commitment to both principles is essential for the continued flourishing of both faith and country.
The Democrats could have at least suggested that people without faith also care about progress and justice and that we support or volunteer with organizations that work toward those ends. Instead, they ignored us.
We expect this treatment from Republicans. But when the Democrats ignore our constituency as well, we know we still have a long way to go in terms of being accepted as equals in American society.