Statement Of Americans United For Separation Of Church And State On Filibuster Deal

AU Vows Opposition To Extreme Nominees

Americans United Executive Director Barry W. Lynn released the following statement today on the Senate filibuster deal:

"The Senate deal announced last night ends the possibility of any immediate threat to the demise of the filibuster of judicial nominees.

"The deal, however, did open the door to votes on two of the most extreme opponents of separation of church and state. California Supreme Court Justice Janice Rogers Brown and former Alabama Attorney General William H. Pryor have on numerous occasions taken positions far outside the judicial mainstream on First Amendment rights, privacy rights and civil liberties.

"Brown has attacked the wall of separation between church and state as 'an uninformative metaphor.' Pryor has publicly questioned whether federal court precedent is always binding on the states. These two nominees have proven they are not fit for lifetime appointments on the federal bench.

"Americans United for Separation of Church and State will continue to urge the Senate to reject the nominations of Brown and Pryor because of their crabbed understanding of some of our nation's most cherished fundamental rights.

"We pledge to remain vigilant. If these nominees or others who hold similar views end up filling enough federal court vacancies, the United States could be saddled with a federal judiciary full of zealots issuing rulings based not on constitutional precepts but on the dictates of theocrats like James Dobson, Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson."

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.