No Separation of Church and State in Constitution? Ask Christine O’Donnell
On Tuesday Republican Senate nominee Christine O’Donnell of Delaware questioned whether the U.S. Constitution calls for a separation of church and state. The revelation came before an audience of legal scholars at Widener University Law School as O’Donnell criticized her opponent’s position that teaching creationism in public schools would violate the First Amendment by promoting religious doctrine.
The audience was visibly shocked by O’Donnell’s apparent ignorance concerning the First Amendment, especially when she challenged Democrat Chris Coons’ assertion that it was in fact the First Amendment that bars Congress from making laws respecting the establishment of or promotion of a particular religion.
Given the fact that many on the far right take a similar position, perhaps the audience shouldn’t have been so surprised. Delaware Tea Party candidate Glen Urquhart, who is looking to replace Coons, has suggested repeatedly that the First Amendment does not in fact create a separation of church and state. Urquhart has taken his own brand of constitutional crazy one step further by asserting that the very premise of separation of church and state is a doctrine established and made famous by Nazis.
Yes, folks, these two individuals are currently vying for federal office. Neither has a minimum competency or understanding of the Constitution yet both have the possibility of crafting federal law. If you were not motivated to go out and vote in opposition to the Tea Party candidates, hopefully you are now.
photo courtesy of michaeldjohns via Flickr