Skip to comments.O'Donnell Questions Separation of Church, State in Senate Debate
Posted on 10/19/2010 8:25:06 AM PDT by truthfreedom
Republican Senate nominee Christine O'Donnell of Delaware on Tuesday questioned whether the U.S. Constitution calls for a separation of church and state, appearing to disagree or not know that the First Amendment bars the government from establishing religion.
The exchange came in a debate before an audience of legal scholars and law students at Widener University Law School, as O'Donnell criticized Democratic nominee Chris Coons' position that teaching creationism in public school would violate the First Amendment by promoting religious doctrine.
(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...
It's been a controversial issue for years, and Fox should point out the facts. If I'm not mistaken, Clarence Thomas, and many legal scholars agree with Christine on this.
It's complicated, but the 1A reads in part "respecting an establishment of religion". Basically, that says that the Fed Gov has to leave its hands off the states and the localities. If they want to establish religion, they can.
And prior to 1947 there was no question that states and localities could establish religion.
The Fox lead is misleading. “Separation of church and state” is not specified in the First Amendment. “Establishment of religion” is. People are entitled to their opinion on this and should not be accused of ignorance for not equating the two.
If the lead came from AP, it’s still Fox’s lameness for picking it up and sending it on its way to us. I’m sick of this.
O'Donnell was absolutely correct. The 1st Amendment says nothing about the "separation of church and state" -- that's a modern and incorrect description of the prohibition of the establishment of a national religion.
Note, it is NOT Fox News. It is an Associated Press story.
The First Amendment does NOT bar Churches from endorsing candidates, for instance.
At least originally the Constitution only restrained the Federal Government. Most people, I don’t think are even aware of that (a fault of our public school system). In addition, I don’t see how what is taught in school is establishing a religion.
My version of the US Constitution states pretty clearly that the First Amendment Applies to Congress NOT THE STATES. “Congress Shall Make No Law...”
But then again I learned to read in the early 60’s when words still had meaning.
THe author of this piece is the f****** clueless one regarding the 1A, not Christine.
The 14th Amendment incorporated the First, though.
My recollection was that there was a Supreme Court decision a 100 years ago or so that interpreted "Congress" to mean any state or local government (I know, I know - not sure how that works). Does anyone recall the particulars or is my memory flawed (certainly possible)?
Well yeah, it is. "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."
Next will come the libtard talking points expressing dismay and disgust that a conservative does not know about separation of church and state and the sheeple will mimic.
Right. But a terrible story. Widener Law is a really bad law school, so I’m not surprised that the students there who couldn’t get into a better than average law school were gasping. “Separation of church and state” was first mentioned in a Supreme Court case in 1947. I can’t recall exactly, but I don’t think it was in the holding. Everson v Board of Education. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Everson_v._Board_of_Education
She gets it correct but gets accused of not understanding the first amendment.
While I want her vote in the Senate, I hope she wins in order to continually torment the left.
If you heard the exchange...Coon said that the “separation of church and state was in the 1st amendment when he said the other lines...O’Donnell caught Coons and he tried to change the subject, this writer is being bias in how it’s being reported.
I would like it if we could get our people up to speed on the facts and battle the leftists to a draw, at least, on this one.
Fox News can find someone, maybe the Judge, who can correctly point out that Christine is basically right. Separation of Church and State was invented out of thin air in 1947. It’s not in the Constitution. Leftists put it there in 1947. Everson and the Everson line of cases are just as fictional and make as little sense as Roe v. Wade. Battle this one. Christine did not say anything wrong at all.
I hope the good folks in Delaware see through these cheesy attempts to portray a conservative woman as a dope because she doesn't follow the liberal line. However, Delaware elected Joe Biden to the senate for almost 40 years so I'm not as optimistic as I would like to be.
They really detest Christine because they can't control her.
"Republican Senate nominee Christine O'Donnell of Delaware on Tuesday questioned whether the U.S. Constitution calls for a separation of church and state, appearing to disagree or not know that the First Amendment bars the government from establishing religion."
First Amendment (from memory): "Congress shall make no law regarding the establishment of religion, nor prohibiting the free exercise thereof."
Okay, that's clear enough. Congress, 535 jerks on Capitol Hill can't pass laws ESTABLISHING any particular religion as the country's religion. And, they can't pass laws to stop you from practicing your own religion. Plain English.
"Separation of Church and State" is a different concept, a more stringent, almost anti-religious concept, in which religions and governments may not INTERACT. That's patent baloney. It is essentially the ESTABLISHMENT of ANTI-RELIGION.
I'll argue for the moment that "Separation of Church and State" as a concept is antithetical to the First Amendment, because it establishes anti-religion as the National Religion.
Leftists have grabbed ahold of "Separation of Church and State" as their Established Religion in order to quash any actual Religion from interacting with the Government. That's totalitarian, as usual for leftists.
And, more than avoiding the Establishment of a National Religion, is aimed squarely at the public existence of Religion, which they want to kill in favor of G-dless Marxism.
I’d like to hear the exact quote.
The leftist probably said “separation of church and state”
I think that the whole post 1947 “separation of church and state” is just wrong and it should be overturned as much as Roe v Wade.
I agree. In addition, Fox radio news is indistinguishable from MSNBC. My affiliate which carries Rush has it, and I am forced to listen to it. They frame every story like any other MSM outlets. It sucks.
Yes, I’m not a Constitutional scholar, but I agree, that whole notion has done more to harm the country than pretty much anything.
Christine should be talking about the Everson line of cases for years. I’m sure that Christine knows exactly all about this. This should be in her wheelhouse.
Anyway, the scumbag AP reporter snots, "...appearing to disagree or not know that the First Amendment bars the government from establishing religion." The scumbag AP reporter appears to disagree or not know that the First Amendment bars congress from establishing religion, and it also bars congress from making any law that prohibits the free exercise of religion.
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof...."
Exactly. Even after the Constitution was signed, many states had official state religions, which was not a violation of the Constitution. The Founders did not want an official national religion similar to what England and many European countries had.
Thank you for so clearly stating that.
You don’t have to be a Constitutional scholar to know that that whole “separation of Church and State” is bs.
And we don’t necessarily want Christine to be off message right now, but we do want Christine talking about this in the future.
Hush, you’ll scare the Obots. I’d rather not stir them up. ;)
It was on the Fox website. But it said AP on that website.
I didn’t know exactly how to describe it.
I’m distressed that FOX, which is supposed to be our news station, is printing something that is clearly leftist bs.
Fox could just point out that many many many people, most conservatives, think she’s right. This is an active issue that many people pay attention to.
O’Donnell asking Coons...
“You’re telling me that’s in the First Amendment?”
seems to be referring back to her question to him about “Where in the Constitution is the separation of church and state?”
I could be wrong, but she appears to be challenging Coons to point to where in the first amendment the term “separation of church and state” exists.
At least that is my impression.
This reporter is a moron if he thinks there is no difference between “separation of church and state” and “no establishment of religion.”
A stupid moron, giving aid and comfort to the enemy.
People have been loudly arguing this question for the past 50 or 60 years. And he missed it?
Yeah, she had better issue a clarification immediately or this will be all the media reports of the debate.
Right, it’s a point for Christine. I’d like to see our conservative pundits argue for Christine on this one strongly.
“Separation of Church and State” is not in the Constitution.
It was made up in 1947.
Why does this appear on Foxnews? What happened to “Fair and Balanced”.
The reporter is the enemy. And Fox News is suspect. Many have argued that Fox News is pure neocon. Not conservative. I’d like to see Fox News take the Conservative side here.
They carry AP stories on their website. I have been burned by that before. I have read stories on their site and have been shocked at the bias only to look at the byline and see AP. Now, it is the first place I look.
What “clarification” would you suggest she make?
She’s 100% right. She could say the same thing again. “Separation of Church and State is not in the Constitution” is a true statement. It was made up in 1947.
Maybe they should drop AP then as the P seems to stand for “Propaganda” not press as many are lead to believe.
She needs to clarify the antecedent for “that’s” when she replied to Coons second statement. In his second statement he quoted the establishment clause. She replied “You’re telling that’s in the Constitution.” If “that’s” referred to his quoting of the establishment clause, then she’s wrong. If “that’s” referred back to his original “separation” claim, she’s right. She needs to clarify the “that’s.”
Someone who has access to the video needs to check whether “You’re telling me that’s in the Constitution” followed immediately upon Coon’s quoting of the establishement language or whether something came in between to which her “that’s” might refer. If the AP journalista omitted part of the dialogue, muddying the antecedent, the journalista should be fired. But if O’Donnell was replying directly to Coons’s establishment language but intended to refer to his earlier separation language, then she messed up with an unclear antecedent and needs to clarify.
Except that damage is done. They’ve got their latest gotcha.
She may have been incautious. But it’s extremely difficult to guard against media misinterpretation all the time, without sounding pretty stilted.
It’s clear from the earlier part of the discussion that she knows what’s in the Constitution (establishment of religion) and what’s not (separation of church and state).
Moreover, although it didn’t come up here, the Constitution did NOT originally forbid establishment of religion within the states. Massachusetts had an established religion for years, and so did several other states.
See 47 above.
I think she was intent on “separation” and never caught his switch to ‘establishment”.