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Freedom of Religious Expression Protection Act of 2007

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The act, often abbreviated “PERA” (Public Expression of Religion Act) was introduced introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives in 2006 and was passed by a strong majority. It was not considered by the Senate in 2006. Sam Brownback (R-Kansas) has reintroduced it to the Senate for 2007. The act prohibits the award of attorney’s fees in 1st amendment establishment clause cases which are characterized by citizens suing the government (federal or local) for things like having a cross in a city seal, a monument with the ten commandments in a courthouse, or (directly relevant to ID) putting a sticker in a textbook saying evolution is a theory not a fact (Cobb County), or telling a biology class that there are criticisms to Darwin’s theory of evolution (Dover).

The long and the short of it is that anyone who sues the government and wins can collect exhorbitant 7 figure attorney’s fees while if they lose the government cannot recoup its expenses from the losing side. This is unfair and encouraged the growth of what’s become a cottage industry for the ACLU – suing governments over religious expression and collecting exhorbitant attorney’s fees.

Please join with the American Legion and write your senators to tell them you support the Veterans’ Memorials, Boy Scouts, Public Seals and Other Expressions of Religion Protection Act of 2007 (S. 415).

Click here to locate and send email to your senators.

I think that to have any chance of passing the Senate, this bill needs to be changed to a cap on attorney fee awards for both establishment clause and free exercise clause lawsuits. My detailed analysis of this bill is at -- http://im-from-missouri.blogspot.com/2007/03/bill-barring-attorney-fee-awards-in.html Larry Fafarman

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