POSTED: Monday, September 24, 2012 - 8:00pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, September 25, 2012 - 9:31am
A hearing is set on Oct. 16 in a lawsuit filed by a Hawkins man, contesting the constitutionality of a posting in the Wood County commissioners courtroom and the commissioners’ practice of opening sessions with prayer.
The lawsuit, filed in April by Charles Frederick Scott III, contends “In God We Trust” is posted in violation of the First Amendment.
Commissioner retained the Alliance Defense Fund and Liberty Institute for representation in the lawsuit.
Liberty Institute, on behalf of the Wood County Commissioners court, filed a motion for summary judgement “to end the frivolous lawsuit.”
Erin Leu of Liberty Institute said, “The law is entirely clear in this.” She noted there are two issues.
She said the posting of the national motto has been established as a “national acknowledgement of our religious heritage.” She said every court of appeals to consider the issue has ruled use or display of the national motto is constitutional.
Leu said, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled opening with pray is constitutional.
Wood County Judge Bryan Jeanes declined to comment because the matter is in litigation.
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