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Public Statements

Veterans' Memorials, Boy Scouts, Public Seals, And Other Public Expressions Of Religion Protection Act Of 2006

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC


VETERANS' MEMORIALS, BOY SCOUTS, PUBLIC SEALS, AND OTHER PUBLIC EXPRESSIONS OF RELIGION PROTECTION ACT OF 2006 -- (House of Representatives - September 26, 2006)

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Mr. PITTS. Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the gentleman from Indiana (Mr. Hostettler) for his efforts to raise awareness of this important issue.

Mr. Speaker, passing this bill would be a win for millions of Americans who cherish religious freedom in America. And it would be a win for those who understand our Constitution guarantees freedom of religion, not freedom from religion.

We all know in 1976 Congress passed a law allowing citizens to sue the government if they feel their constitutional rights have been violated. In recent years, groups like the ACLU have twisted this law to advance their agenda of eliminating any public expression of religion.

By using the threat of a lawsuit combined with uncertain jurisprudence on the issue, these groups have been able to bully local governments into removing any expression of religion whatsoever, and this affects public seals, Boy Scouts, veterans memorials, Ten Commandment displays, among other things.

Slowly but surely, groups like the ACLU are using the practice to remove any public acknowledgment of religion. This bill protects religious freedom by eliminating the unfair advantage groups like the ACLU enjoy. By denying these groups the ability to collect attorneys fees in establishment clause cases, this bill puts America's countless cities, towns and localities on a level-playing field. No longer would the taxpayers in these towns be forced to foot the bill to defend their constitutional right to freedom of religion. The bill addresses a real concern in a meaningful way. I urge all Members to support its passage.

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