CNN: SCOTUS ‘Breaking Down’ First Amendment Siding With Religious Liberty

Political News

When it comes to the First Amendment, the liberal media only care about the fraction that deals with the press and those they think they can abuse to limit conservatives, and anything outside their notions is an attack on it. Thus their disdain for religious liberty was on full display during Tuesday’s CNN Newsroom after the Supreme Court ruled 6-3 in favor of religious liberty and against state-sponsored discrimination of religious schools.

In the latest batch of court decisions released on Tuesday, the conservative majority ruled in Carson v. Makin that the State of Maine could not bar parents from using the state’s tuition assistance program to send their kids to religious schools.

Of course, this sent CNN into a tailspin as justice correspondent Jessica Schneider fretted, “this goes along the trend of what we’ve been seeing from this conservative majority to bolster religious rights and decide cases on the side of religious liberties.”

She went on to huff how “We saw it back in 2017 when the court there said that states could not exclude church playgrounds from any state funding that they gave to resurface all playgrounds.”

You Might Like

For the panel discussion, co-hosts Poppy Harlow and Jim Sciutto first sought out the insights of CNN chief legal analyst and masturbation expert Jeffrey Toobin.

Being the first to directly bring up the First Amendment, Toobin seemed to suggest that the ruling essentially meant Congress had established a religion and thus violated the Constitution:

Well, this, again, is part of a major trend and the larger subject is can the government fund religious schools? Can taxpayer dollars go to schools that are openly religious?

(…)

However, there is also the establishment clause of the First Amendment, which said the Congress cannot establish a religion. And, historically, the court has said: if there is government money going to religious institutions, including schools, that is a violation of the establishment clause.

“That idea is breaking down under the conservative majority,” Toobin decried. “It is a conflict between the establishment clause and the free exercise clause. And under this conservative majority, the free exercise clause is winning case after case.”

Essentially what CNN is arguing here is that it’s fine for a government to exclude or discriminate against religious institutions from programs that are generally open to groups that perform similar functions based on their religious beliefs.

Showing an elementary understanding of the issue at hand, Sciutto looked to former prosecutor Jennifer Rodgers and suggested the ruling could have violated “a separation between church and state here.”

Rodger gave him the answer he was looking for and parroted Toobin in the process. “I mean, the old saw of a separation between church and state, which is based on the establishment clause, is breaking down,” she warned.

She continued to push a warped view that with the recognition and protection of religious liberty somehow the First Amendment was being torn down, including a view where the free exercise of religion was inherently at odds with free speech:

We’re really seeing that it’s not going to be there the more and more this court erodes the establishment clause by elevating freedom of religious expression, the free exercise clause, above the notion of the establishment clause. So, we have that here.

The other thing that is interesting in this case, as in so many cases before the court these days, is the clash between free speech, free religion, free exercise of religion, and these other First Amendment rights. And, again, this court is elevating the religious aspects of the First Amendment above others, like plain old free speech.

“So, it is all breaking down,” she reiterated. “I mean, we see where they’re going. This is not a surprise. This result was not a surprise. The split was not a surprise. And we’ll just have to see how much more eroded it gets in the years to come.”

And in the time they had before they went to a commercial, Toobin unilaterally took control of the floor and went on a rant spewing talking points peddled by corrupt teachers’ unions.

Coming out against funding students over systems, Toobin griped about “the conservative movement in this country … is advocating a complete voucher system for public education in this country… That would be, many public school advocates say, a death sentence to public schools in this country because they would lose a lot of the financial support they have now.”

But if public schools were so great Jeffrey, why would they be scared of losing their funding? Or do you want to keep private schools, like the one you went to, exclusive to the wealthy?

This rejection of the religious liberty was made possible because of lucrative sponsorships from Amazon and ADT. Their contact information is linked.

The transcript is below, click “expand” to read:

CNN Newsroom
June 21, 2022
10:35:46 a.m. Eastern

(…)

JESSICA SCHNEIDER: Yeah. And this is a case that came up because about half of Maine’s school districts are actually too small to sustain a public high school. So, what the state of Maine does is it provides tuition assistance in the form of vouchers for students in those districts to attend other private schools.

And the question was, could Maine exclude certain religious schools, and the court here saying in a 6-3 opinion written by the chief justice, John Roberts, that Maine cannot exclude religious schools from that tuition reimbursement program, saying that it violates the free exercise clause. That clause, of course, restricts a state from discriminating on the basis of religion.

There were several parents in Maine who brought this challenge, saying that they wanted to send their student to a religious school but that this tuition assistance program wasn’t available to them. They argue that it violated the Constitution, and today, a 6-3 conservative majority agreeing with those parents.

So, now, Maine will have to restructure its program to provide this tuition assistance for all students in the state of Maine. There are several other states in the country that have a similar program. So, arguably, they’ll also be affected by this Supreme Court ruling.

But, Jim and Poppy, this goes along the trend of what we’ve been seeing from this conservative majority to bolster religious rights and decide cases on the side of religious liberties. We saw it last term where they ruled on the side of a Catholic foster agency that refused to work with same-sex parents. We saw it back in 2017 when the court there said that states could not exclude church playgrounds from any state funding that they gave to resurface all playgrounds.

So, this is just the latest trend, and this is a big win for the parents in Maine who said that their students — their children should also be receiving this tuition reimbursement that went to students at all schools. They said it should go to students as well at religious schools.

This was something that we saw at oral arguments. The conservative justice, Brett Kavanaugh said, basically, all they want is equal treatment to attend the same schools that other students do. So, this case now decided in favor of those parents who argued that their students should be entitled to this tuition reimbursement as well, guys.

POPPY HARLOW: Let’s bring in CNN chief legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin and former federal prosecutor Jennifer Rodgers.

So, Jessica laid that out so well, Jeffrey. This has been coming. This has been building. It was the chief justice, Roberts, who, in 2017, wrote that opinion in Trinity Lutheran and said, ‘no, you can’t exclude religious schools from a grant to resurface playgrounds.’ But he left for another day – and I guess that day is today – this bigger decision. What does it mean for the country?

JEFFREY TOOBIN: Well this, again, is part of a major trend and the larger subject is can the government fund religious schools? Can taxpayer dollars go to schools that are openly religious?

Now, under the free exercise clause, we have parochial schools in this country and we have children — parents can educate their children with — under any sort of religious — any religion they like. However, there is also the establishment clause of the First Amendment, which said the Congress cannot establish a religion. And, historically, the court has said: if there is government money going to religious institutions, including schools, that is a violation of the establishment clause.

That idea is breaking down under the conservative majority. There are more and more opportunities, whether it is funding textbooks, whether it is funding playgrounds, now scholarships, where it is permissible for the government to give money to religious institutions.

It is a conflict between the establishment clause and the free exercise clause. And under this conservative majority, the free exercise clause is winning case after case.

JIM SCIUTTO: Jennifer Rodgers, this has, obviously, legal constitutional implications here under this umbrella of religious freedom. And this court — there are a lot of cases going to come its way under that umbrella – it also has practical implications because it gets to funding of public schools. Right? And there’s a finite amount of money if something is going to religious schools, what does that mean for public schools?

But on the broader issue, for layman at home, who say, wait, I thought there was a separation between church and state here, in the most — I know that’s a simplification, but in the most general terms, what does this mean about how this court sees that division?

JENNIFER RODGERS: Well, Jeffrey is exactly right. I mean, the old saw of a separation between church and state, which is based on the establishment clause, is breaking down. We’re really seeing that it’s not going to be there the more and more this court erodes the establishment clause by elevating freedom of religious expression, the free exercise clause, above the notion of the establishment clause. So, we have that here.

The other thing that is interesting in this case, as in so many cases before the court these days, is the clash between free speech, free religion, free exercise of religion, and these other First Amendment rights. And, again, this court is elevating the religious aspects of the First Amendment above others, like plain old free speech.

So, it is all breaking down. I mean, we see where they’re going. This is not a surprise. This result was not a surprise. The split was not a surprise. And we’ll just have to see how much more eroded it gets in the years to come.

TOOBIN: Can I just to talk a little bit about where this is heading, because, again, this is no secret. Is basically the conservative movement in this country is moving towards — or is advocating a complete voucher system for public education in this country, which is every student in America would get a certain amount of money. And you could use that money to go to a public school or you could use that money to go to a parochial school. And there would be essentially 100 percent funding of parochial schools.

That would be, many public school advocates say, a death sentence to public schools in this country because they would lose a lot of the financial support they have now. But that’s the bigger issue on the horizon, and that’s closer as a result of the decision today.

SCIUTTO: It’s a big point. It’s a big point. It’s a major — potential major policy change there.

Articles You May Like

I Guess It’s Okay to Question the Legitimacy of Our Institutions Now
Cook Political Report Shifts Six More 2022 House Races To Republicans
Housing shortage starts easing as listings surge in June
‘You sons of b***hes’: Jordan Peterson refuses to bend the knee to ‘toxic’ Twitter, says he’d ‘rather die’ than delete tweet about transgender actor Elliot Page
CensorTrack with TR: TikTok Bans SBA Pro-Life Group on Day of Roe Reversal

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.