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The official Americans United blog on legislation and activities of lawmakers.

Different Names, Same Problems

Private school voucher programs all around the country are siphoning public money into private and religious schools, resulting in a slew of civil rights and regulatory problems. Read more

Government Endorsed Religion in State Bills

Several bills moved in state legislatures last week that encourage government-sanctioned prayer under the guise of “protecting” religious freedoms. In reality, these bills merely make it easier to evangelize to captive audiences in a government setting.

Virginia Senate Bill 555 Read more

Religion in Alabama Public Schools

The Alabama legislature discussed two harmful bills yesterday, both of which would result in government promotion of religion in Alabama public schools

Of course, students already have to the right to engage in voluntary, student initiated prayer and religious expression in public schools, making these bills unnecessary. The bills are also harmful because they push for government sponsored and promoted prayer in the public school classrooms, which is not only unconstitutional, but would lead to many students feeling uncomfortable and excluded because of their beliefs. Read more

School Vouchers Are Not “Saving” Kids from Public Schools

Private school vouchers are being pushed by short-sighted leaders all around the country. About 20 states currently have some sort of private school voucher program and many state leaders intend to try to expand and create even more next year, despite the even further diminishing public support of vouchers. Read more

Fabricated Fears: Sharia Law

Yesterday House Bill 522, which prohibits the application of “foreign laws” in North Carolina, became law. Although that may sound harmless on its face, the bill is actually motivated by anti-Muslim animus and a manufactured fear that Sharia law is being implemented in the U.S. Read more

Nonpartisan Poll Shows Highest Level of Public Disapproval for Vouchers

This week, the 45th annual PDK/Gallup Poll of the Public’s Attitudes Toward the Public Schools was released. Although it hit on several hot education topics, such as the Common Core State Standards and Teacher Evaluation, one of the poll’s most notable results was the public’s growing disapproval of private school vouchers. Read more

Choice Charade: Senators Host Pro-Voucher Event On Capitol Hill

On Tuesday, U.S. Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Tim Scott (R-S.C.) hosted an event called “Success for Our Children: A Roundtable Forum on School Choice.”

The forum included three one-sided panels in favor of so-called “school choice.” Although the discussion did include a lot of talk about charter schools, the senators and panelists also strongly pushed private school vouchers. Read more

Playing Politics with Religious Freedom

Reproductive justice is a hot button issue, and while important in its own right, sometimes it overshadows other important religious liberty concerns that also exist in a state bill. This happened recently in both North Carolina and Ohio. Read more

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