Suit To Remove “In God We Trust” From Currency
HandelontheLaw.com Staff Writer
Michael Newdow is quite a guy. He is an attorney, an emergency medicine doctor, a reverend in the Universal Life Church and a relentless advocate of the separation of church and state. Newdow previously unsuccessfully sued the federal government at least twice to remove “under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance. Now he is suing the federal government to remove “In God We Trust” from U. S. currency. Newdow’s logic for attacking “In God We Trust” is presented in a series of YouTube videos, starting with this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IEknKMWY844&list=PL7CC5B0160D83B7FE
Claiming that the use of “In God We Trust” on U. S. money is unconstitutional because it violates the separation of church and state, the suit is brought in behalf of 40+ Plaintiffs, including Michigan Atheists, the Norther Ohio Freethought Society and others from Ohio and Michigan. Defendants include: the U. S. Congress; The United States Of America; Jacob J. Lew, Secretary of The Treasury; Rhett Jeppson, Principal Deputy Director, United States Mint; and Leonard R. Olijar, Director, Bureau of Engraving And Printing;
The 112-page suit was filed in the U. S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio on January 11, 2016. The complaint can be accessed here: https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/2681345/Currency-Lawsuit.pdf
The suit requests judgment that the use of “In G-d We Trust” on U. S. coins and currency violates:
- the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA);
- the Fifth Amendment’s Due Process clause;
- the First Amendment’s Free Speech Clause; and
- the First Amendment’s Free Exercise Clause;
The suit also requests that Defendants be permanently enjoined from minting coins and/or printing currency with “In G-d We Trust,” along with all reasonable costs, expert witness fees, attorney fees and other expenses. There’s no word from the opposition yet.
By Kathy Catanzarite
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