Supreme Court Rules In Favor Of Free Exercise: Excluding Churches From Public Benefits ‘Odious To Our Constitution’

On Monday morning, the Supreme Court released a ruling by a 7-2 margin finding that states cannot prohibit public funding to churches simply because they are churches. The case itself surrounds a playground at the Trinity Lutheran Church Child Learning Center; the Center sought public funding for a rubber surface. The Department of Natural Resources denied the petition, citing a blanket rule that it would not fund churches. The Court rightly found that “denying a generally available benefit solely on account of religious identity imposes a penalty on the free exercise of religion.”

The opinion was delivered by Chief Justice Roberts, with concurrences by Justices Thomas and Gorsuch. Only the far-left justices, Sotomayor and Ginsburg, dissented. Chief Justice Roberts’ main point: “the exclusion of Trinity Lutheran from a public benefit for which it is otherwise qualified, solely because it is a church, is odious to our Constitution all the same, and cannot stand.”

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