EXCLUSIVE: Former Attorney General Bill Barr is supporting a new amicus brief on the Supreme Court, led by Democratic legal professional David Boies, opposing Maine’s choice to dam public tuition from flowing to college students who select to attend religious faculties.
The Supreme Court agreed this summer time to take up the case, Carson v. Makin, which stems from a Maine program that gives tuition for Maine residents to attend non-public excessive faculties if their native district doesn’t have a public school.
“Maine’s regulation is the reflection of the relentless marketing campaign of secularization intent on driving each vestige of conventional faith from the general public sq.,” stated Barr in a launch from the Defense of Freedom Institute for Policy Studies (DFI).
“Maine has no objection with offering funds to college students to attend non-public faculties that aggressively instruct youngsters about behaviors that mirror the progressive values and practices of latest America. Yet, in alarming distinction, Maine’s regulation targets and excludes these faculties that instruct college students on the religious practices commanded by their religion, forcing households to decide on between abandoning their religious convictions and foregoing wanted public help to which they’re in any other case entitled by regulation. This is an unacceptable violation of the First Amendment and religious discrimination of the worst variety.”
SUPREME COURT TO HEAR CASE ON MAINE TUITION PROGRAM THAT BARS MONEY FOR RELIGIOUS EDUCATION
The state says it might probably’t discriminate in opposition to faculties based mostly on their standing of being linked to religious establishments. But it says it might probably ban cash from going to the school if it promotes a sure religious view to its college students – one thing many religious faculties do.
It comes in the wake of a latest Supreme Court case that dominated the federal government cannot ban authorities support in a usually accessible program from going to religious faculties.
The earlier case, Espinoza v. Montana, was thought-about a significant win for religious liberty advocates. But the Maine program contains completely different language that, if upheld, might successfully neuter Espinoza.
Friday’s brief was filed by David Boies, a Democratic legal professional who represented former presidential candidate Al Gore in Bush v. Gore. One of the attorneys at Boies’ agency reportedly helped former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton with debate prep.
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“The Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment prohibits the Government from imposing religious-based restrictions on the non-public selections of particular person residents,” stated Boies. “Here, the State makes an attempt to make use of religious standards to decree to which secondary school dad and mom might ship their youngsters just because the dad and mom obtain usually accessible tuition help. This regulation strikes on the coronary heart of, and is clearly prohibited by, the Free Exercise Clause.”
The First Circuit Court of Appeals, which upheld Maine’s regulation, stated that as a result of the Maine program applies solely to college students who shouldn’t have entry to public faculties, those that search religiously “intertwined” training aren’t in search of “equal entry” to the good thing about a free training.
Former Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos stated, “Sadly, religious discrimination has been tolerated for too lengthy, not solely by means of prohibitions on religious faculties just like the Maine regulation but in addition by means of different pointless restrictions on college students like bigoted Blaine Amendments.”
Fox News’ Tyler Olson contributed to this report.