Title

Rick Garnett was quoted in the NPR story Prayers Before Town Hall Meetings Are Constitutional, High Court Finds on May 5

Document Type

News Article

Publication Date

5-5-2014

Abstract

Rick Garnett was quoted in the NPR story Prayers Before Town Hall Meetings Are Constitutional, High Court Finds on May 5.

University of Notre Dame Professor of Law and religious freedom expert Richard W. Garnett says that today's decision doesn't change the way this kind of prayer has been viewed historically. "It would have been a dramatic and controversial move — a move that the [Obama] Administration, among others, argued against — to rule that legislative prayers are necessarily unconstitutional," Garnett tells us in an email. "And, none of the Justices endorsed such a departure from past practices and rulings. As a result, though, the law in this area remains as muddled and difficult to apply has it has been for the past 30 years. Legislative prayers, even ones that are 'sectarian,' are permissible, sometimes, depending on context and circumstances."