July/August 2016 Church & State - July/August 2015

Extremist Loses Bid For Texas Education Board

  AU admin

A Religious Right candidate with extreme views lost a Republican primary race for Texas State Board of Education (SBOE) in May.

Mary Lou Bruner became the focus of attention after several of her social media posts became public. She believes that climate change is a myth devised by Karl Marx, and that President Barack Obama had previously worked as a gay prostitute.

Bruner’s inflammatory public Facebook posts also indicated a serious commitment to creationism and “Christian nation” pseudo-history. She blamed school shootings on court decisions that upheld the teaching of evolution and removed the Ten Commandments from government buildings.  

Former SBOE chair Don McLeroy, also a creationist, had endorsed her candidacy. “I think she’ll be a great asset,” he told the Texas Observer. “She testified all the time when I was on the board.” 

“If Bruner had ultimately won election to the board, she would have instantly become the most embarrassingly uninformed and divisive member on a board that already too often puts politics ahead of making sure our kids get a sound education,” said Texas Freedom Network President Kathy Miller.

Bruner lost her race to Kevin Ellis, who currently sits on the school board in Lufkin.


Americans United & the National Women’s Law Center file suit to challenge Missouri’s abortion bans.

Abortion bans violate the separation of church and state. Americans United and the National Women’s Law Center—the leading experts in religious freedom and gender justice—have joined forces with thirteen clergy from six faith traditions to challenge Missouri’s abortion bans as unconstitutionally imposing one narrow religious doctrine on everyone.

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