Thursday, August 17, 2006

Petition For Cert Filed In Establishment Clause Standing Case

A petition for certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court has recently been filed by the U.S. Justice Department appealing the 7th Circuit's decision in Grace v. Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc. The question presented, as described by the brief is: "Whether taxpayers have standing ... to challenge on Establishment Clause grounds the actions of Executive Branch officials pursuant to an Executive Order, where the plaintiffs challenge no Act of Congress, the Executive Branch actions at issue are financed only indirectly through general appropriations, and no funds are disbursed to any entities or individuals outside the government." The 7th Circuit found standing. (See prior posting). The underlying claim challenges White House spending for conferences and other activities promoting the President's Faith Based Initiative. The Roundtable on Religion and Social Welfare Policy discusses the petition at greater length. [Thanks to Blog from the Capital for the lead.]