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Arizona AG wants Supreme Court to protect prayer at public meetings

(Flickr/Ondřej Vaněček)

PHOENIX — Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich joined leaders from 22 other states to urge the U.S. Supreme Court to protect the practice of lawmaker-led prayer at public meetings.

The lawmakers filed a brief on Wednesday that asked the court to “hear arguments and confirm the constitutionality of the practice.”

They argued that the decision would “clear confusion among the lower courts and strike down a ruling that impacts Arizona.”

In a statement, Brnovich said the brief argues that lawmaker-led prayer is “woven into the fabric of American society” and that it is “fully consistent with the Constitution and our nation’s long tradition of non-coercive expressions of faith in the public sector.”

Having lawmakers lead the prayer also helps governing bodies save money by not having to hire a full-time chaplain or recruit volunteer clergy, the lawmakers argued.

Arizona was joined by 22 other states in filing the brief. Among the other states were West Virginia, Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri and Montana.

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