ACLJ Wins Second Victory in Kentucky Case

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    Federal Appeals Court Upholds Constitutionality Of Ten Commandments Display


    ''This is an important defeat for the ACLU and other groups that are committed to removing our religious heritage and traditions from the public square.''
    Jay Sekulow, ACLJ Chief Counsel


    WASHINGTON, April 24, 2006 - The Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals announced today that it would reject a request to rehear a Ten Commandments case out of Kentucky. The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), who represents Mercer County, the defendants in the case, was pleased by the court's 9-to-5 vote to not revisit the December 2005 ruling upholding the constitutionality of the Mercer County display.

    ''It's very clear that the full appeals court believes that its three-judge panel ruled correctly in upholding the constitutionality of this display,'' said Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel of the ACLJ. ''This is an important defeat for the ACLU and other groups that are committed to removing our religious heritage and traditions from the public square. If this case is appealed to the Supreme Court, we stand ready to defend the display and remain confident that the constitutionality of the display will prevail.''

    The December 2005 three-judge panel of the Sixth Circuit voted unanimously rejecting the ACLU's argument that the display, which includes the Commandments posted along with other historical documents in the county courthouse, violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.

    In that opinion, Circuit Judge Suhrheinrich said that the ACLU's ''repeated reference to the separation of church and state' . . . has grown tiresome. The First Amendment does not demand a wall of separation between church and state.'' The court said that a reasonable observer of Mercer County's display would appreciate ''the role religion has played in our governmental institutions, and find it historically appropriate and traditionally acceptable for a state to include religious influences, even in the form of sacred texts, in honoring American traditions.''

    The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) is the nation's leading national public interest law firm defending religious liberty. Led by Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow, the ACLJ specializes in constitutional law and is based in Washington, D.C. The ACLJ is online at www.aclj.org.
     

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