Affiliate: ACLU of Idaho
April 6, 2016 2:00 pm

ACLU Affiliate
ACLU of Idaho
Media Contact
125 Broad Street
18th Floor
New York, NY 10004
United States

Boise, ID – The ACLU of Idaho praises Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter’s recent decision to veto SB 1342a, legislation that would have allowed the use of the Bible in science classes at Idaho’s public schools. The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Nuxoll-R of District 7, posed significant constitutional concerns. The federal and state Constitutions prohibit both the use of religious texts in science classes and favoring one religious source such as the Bible over other religious texts.

“The Governor did the right thing and we thank him for protecting Idaho’s Constitution,” said Kathy Griesmyer, ACLU of Idaho’s Public Policy Strategist. “Idaho students and parents need to have a guarantee that their First Amendment rights are preserved in the classroom.”

The ACLU of Idaho sent a letter to the Governor asking him to veto the bill, stating “The risk of potential litigation presented by SB 1342a will remain an ongoing liability for teachers, schools, and school districts across the state that should be utilizing their limited resources for educational purposes—not defending constitutionally questionable legislation.”

The Governor’s veto message echoed those statements. “[Allowing SB 1342a to become law] could result in a loss of funding and costly litigation for Idaho public schools.”

Leo Morales, Executive Director of the ACLU of Idaho stated: “Now we can rest assured that Idaho’s schools will operate within constitutional regulations.”

By completing this form, I agree to receive occasional emails per the terms of the ACLU’s privacy policy.

The latest in Religious Liberty

ACLU's Vision

The American Civil Liberties Union is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States of America.

Learn More About Religious Liberty

Religious Liberty issue image

The ACLU strives to safeguard the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious liberty by ensuring that laws and governmental practices neither promote religion nor interfere with its free exercise.