Americans United Urges Senate To Closely Examine Miers' Views On Church And State

Watchdog Group Says Judiciary Committee Has Obligation To Learn Supreme Court Nominee's Stance On Religious Liberty

Americans United for Separation of Church and State today urged the Senate Judiciary Committee to closely examine Supreme Court nominee Harriet E. Miers to determine her stance on religious liberty.

“It is vital for the senators to determine Miers’ understanding of the First Amendment,” said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United. “Miers has never been a judge, and it is imperative that the judiciary committee uncover her judicial philosophy and her views on the relationship between religion and government.”

President George W. Bush this morning announced the nomination of Miers to take the seat of retiring Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. Miers has served as Bush’s personal attorney in Texas and has been serving as White House counsel. In announcing the nomination, Bush said Miers is devoted to “the rule of law” and “will not legislate from the bench.”

Americans United’s Lynn, noting Miers’ thin legal record, said the Senate Judiciary Committee would have to dig deep to find out where Miers stands on church-state issues.

“Committee members should push Miers to be forthcoming on her understanding of constitutional issues,” Lynn said.

Americans United is a religious liberty watchdog group based in Washington, D.C. Founded in 1947, the organization educates Americans about the importance of church-state separation in safeguarding religious freedom.

Americans United is a religious liberty watchdog group based in Washington, D.C. Founded in 1947, the organization educates Americans about the importance of church-state separation in safeguarding religious freedom.