Christian Action League
August 6, 2015
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Monday night, U.S. Representative Richard Hudson (NC-08) led seventeen bipartisan Members of Congress to file an amicus brief before the Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in Lund v. Rowan County defending the tradition of prayer before a legislative session.
“Prayer has long been an integral part of American government at all levels, uniting us all across diverse backgrounds, party lines and seemingly impossible odds. As a defender of our constitutional rights, I will continue to do all that I can to protect religious liberty and stand up for our right to pray.”
Like many legislative bodies in the United States, the Board of Commissioners in Rowan County, N.C., has opened its meetings with an invocation for years. In 2013, however, three plaintiffs sued in federal district court to enjoin the board’s prayer practice.
Although the Supreme Court held just last year, in Town of Greece v. Galloway, that a town does not create an impermissible establishment of religion by opening its board meetings with faith-specific prayer, the district court struck down Rowan County’s prayer practice because the commissioners themselves delivered the prayers. Rowan County has appealed to the Fourth Circuit.
Our country enjoys an extensive tradition of elected officials making public, religious statements that invite—but do not coerce—private citizens to participate. As the amicus brief shows, the district court’s decision is unmoored from that historical tradition, and should be reversed.
Rep. Hudson was joined by: Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), Rep. Alma Adams (NC-12), Rep. Virginia Foxx (NC-05), Rep. George Holding (NC-13), Rep. Walter Jones (NC-03), Rep. Patrick McHenry (NC-10), Former Rep. Mike McIntyre (NC-07), Rep. Mark Meadows (NC-11), Rep. Robert Pittenger (NC-09), Rep. David Rouzer (NC-07), Rep. Mark Walker (NC-06), Rep. Andy Harris (MD-01), Sen. James Lankford (R-OK), Rep. Jeff Duncan (SC-03), Rep. Trey Gowdy (SC-04), Rep. J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), and Rep. Bob Goodlatte (VA-06).
This story is from a press release provided by the office of Rep. Richard Hudson.