January 16, 2020
Washington, D.C. – Today Representatives Jared Huffman (CA-02) and Jamie Raskin (MD-08), founders of the Congressional Freethought Caucus, issued the following statement regarding President Trump’s guidance on prayer in public schools:
“President Trump and Attorney General Barr’s guidance on school-sponsored prayer in the public education system is their latest attack on our Constitution. The separation of Church and State is a fundamental American value that serves as the cornerstone for religious freedom of all people in our nation, and federal law already requires schools to allow constitutionally-protected prayer. It’s clear that President Trump is more interested in scoring points with his base than in protecting students and the First Amendment. This guidance shows the President’s continuing disregard for the actual First Amendment rights of students, teachers, and faculty, and the President’s ongoing rhetoric and policies aimed at minority religions does nothing more than sow discord and division.
“We also strongly oppose the suite of regulations proposed today by the Departments of Health and Human Services, Education, Housing and Urban Development, Labor, Justice, and others that seek to muddy the clear and distinct separation of church and state.
“When parents send their children to school, they should not have to worry about their children being discriminated against or forced to comply with religious practices or beliefs they do not adhere to. In America, people have the right to make decisions about their own religious practices. The Congressional Freethought Caucus is resolutely opposed to President Trump’s latest affront to the Constitution.”
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