Senate Should Discontinue Chaplain Position

Taxpayer-Funded Chaplaincy Violates Church-State Separation, Adds To Budget Deficit, Says Americans United

Taking note of shrinking federal government revenues, Americans United for Separation of Church and State today urged the U.S. Senate to forgo appointing a new Senate chaplain.

"The U.S. government is running massive deficits and should not be spending our money on a Senate chaplain's salary," said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, Americans United's executive director. "Taxpayers shouldn't be saddled with paying for senators' clergy services."

Head Start Bill Would Allow Religious Discrimination In Hiring, Says Americans United

House Leaders Fast-Track 'Outrageous' Changes To Popular Children's Program To Advance 'Faith-Based' Agenda

Congressional leaders are trying to force a bill through Congress that would permit religious discrimination in staffing of Head Start and jeopardize the positions of thousands of teachers and parent volunteers.

The popular tax-funded program is designed to provide academic instruction and health-care services for three- and four-year-olds, giving them a "head start" before they begin kindergarten. Although Head Start is not a religious program, it is sometimes run by church groups in church facilities.

Americans United Report Details Extreme Views Of Federal Court Nominee Bill Pryor

AU's Lynn Says Alabama Attorney General's Agenda Is 'Dangerous And Divisive '

A report issued by Americans United for Separation of Church and State today details the extreme agenda of federal appeals court nominee Bill Pryor.

Pryor, currently Alabama's attorney general, was recently nominated for a slot on the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals by President George W. Bush. Americans United argues that Pryor is unfit for the position and has asked the Senate to reject his appointment.

Ten Commandments Case Argued Before Federal Appeals Court In Alabama

Judges Sharply Question Attorney For 'Ten Commandments Judge' Roy Moore

Americans United Legal Director Ayesha N. Khan told a federal appeals court yesterday that Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore has no constitutional authority to display the Ten Commandments at the Judicial Building in Montgomery.

Moore's display clearly violates the Constitution and legal precedent and must be removed, Khan advised a three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Christian Coalition, Priests For Life Seek Church-based Political Machine

Voter Registration Drive At Houses Of Worship Is Part Of 'Devious, Divisive Scheme,' Says Americans United

A new Religious Right voter registration drive is part of a larger scheme to build a church-based political machine, according to Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

At a news conference today at the National Press Club, the Christian Coalition, Priests for Life and the National Pro-Life Religious Council announced plans for a church-based voter registration drive on four Sundays between now and the 2004 elections.

Bush Administration Policy Change Allows Public Funding Of 'historic' Churches

Placing Tax Dollars In Church Building Fund Violates Constitution, Says Americans United

The Bush administration has announced that houses of worship deemed "historic" can get direct government support courtesy of the taxpayer, even if they have an active congregation and are still used regularly for worship services.

Interior Secretary Gale Norton announced the new policy at an event at Boston's Old North Church today. Norton said $317,000 will be allocated for repair and restoration of the church building.

Americans United, Allied Groups File Challenge To Colorado Voucher Law

Lawsuit In State Court Says Voucher Program Subverts State Ban Against Public Funding Of Religion

A recently enacted voucher law will drain millions of dollars from Colorado public schools and violate the state constitution's ban on public financing of religion, Americans United for Separation of Church and State charges in a lawsuit filed today.

Americans United and allied organizations brought the Colorado PTA v. Owens legal action in Denver County District Court of behalf of an array of Colorado parents, clergy and taxpayers.

Supreme Court Case To Test States' Ability To Refuse To Pay For Religious Training

High Court Should Uphold Taxpayers' Right To Avoid Subsidizing Theology Students, Says Americans United

The U.S. Supreme Court should uphold the right of states to refuse to pay for the training of theology students, says Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

The high court announced May 19 that it would hear a dispute from Washington state involving a theology student who wanted a state grant to study to become a minister. State officials, citing provisions in the Washington Constitution barring tax support for religion, refused.

House Approves Contentious Religious Discrimination Provision In Job-training Bill

Americans United Urges Senate To Reject House Action That Would Allow For Federal Funding of Religious Discrimination

Ignoring calls to respect civil liberties, the U.S. House of Representatives today passed a major job-training bill with a provision that would permit employment discrimination based on religious beliefs in federally funded programs.

"The House has just approved legislation that undermines our nation's commitment to civil rights and attacks the church-state wall," said Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United. "It's shameful."