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Friday, December 10, 2004

Bush Backs 10 Commandments in Courthouses

From Bloomberg --- here we go.

Ten Commandments Backed by Bush Administration in Court Fight

Dec. 8 (Bloomberg) -- The Bush administration, saying that religion ``has played a defining role'' in the nation's history, urged the U.S. Supreme Court to permit Ten Commandments displays in courthouses.

The Justice Department today filed a brief supporting two Kentucky counties accused of violating the constitutional ban on ...

... government establishment of religion by posting framed copies of the Ten Commandments.

``Official acknowledgement and recognition of the Ten Commandments' influence on American legal history comport with the Establishment Clause,'' the administration argued in a brief filed with the court in Washington.

The filing came in one of two Ten Commandments cases the high court will review early next year. Hundreds of state and local governments sponsor such displays. The justices are also considering the constitutionality of a monument on the Texas State Capitol grounds.

In the Kentucky case, McCreary and Pulaski County officials modified the displays after the American Civil Liberties Union sued. The counties added other documents, including an excerpt from the Declaration of Independence, the national motto of ``In God We Trust'' and a proclamation from President Ronald Reagan marking 1983 as the Year of the Bible.

The Cincinnati-based 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the displays likely violated the Constitution because government officials had a predominantly religious purpose in putting them up. The appeals court upheld a preliminary injunction issued by a trial judge.

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