Text: S.2690 — 107th Congress (2001-2002)All Information (Except Text)

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Reported in House (09/17/2002)

 
[Congressional Bills 107th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[S. 2690 Reported in House (RH)]

                                                 House Calendar No. 211
107th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                S. 2690

                          [Report No. 107-659]


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                             June 27, 2002

               Referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

                           September 17, 2002

Reported with an amendment, referred to the House Calendar, and ordered 
                             to be printed
 [Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert the part printed 
                               in italic]
 [For text of introduced bill, see copy of bill as introduced on June 
                               27, 2002]

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 AN ACT


 
  To reaffirm the reference to one Nation under God in the Pledge of 
                              Allegiance.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. FINDINGS.

    Congress finds the following:
            (1) On November 11, 1620, prior to embarking for the shores 
        of America, the Pilgrims signed the Mayflower Compact that 
        declared: ``Having undertaken, for the Glory of God and the 
        advancement of the Christian Faith and honor of our King and 
        country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the northern 
        parts of Virginia,''.
            (2) On July 4, 1776, America's Founding Fathers, after 
        appealing to the ``Laws of Nature, and of Nature's God'' to 
        justify their separation from Great Britain, then declared: 
        ``We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are 
        created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with 
        certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, 
        and the Pursuit of Happiness''.
            (3) In 1781, Thomas Jefferson, the author of the 
        Declaration of Independence and later the Nation's third 
        President, in his work titled ``Notes on the State of 
        Virginia'' wrote: ``God who gave us life gave us liberty. And 
        can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have 
        removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the 
        people that these liberties are of the Gift of God. That they 
        are not to be violated but with His wrath? Indeed, I tremble 
        for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his 
        justice cannot sleep forever.''.
            (4) On May 14, 1787, George Washington, as President of the 
        Constitutional Convention, rose to admonish and exhort the 
        delegates and declared: ``If to please the people we offer what 
        we ourselves disapprove, how can we afterward defend our work? 
        Let us raise a standard to which the wise and the honest can 
        repair; the event is in the hand of God!''.
            (5) On July 21, 1789, on the same day that it approved the 
        Establishment Clause concerning religion, the First Congress of 
        the United States also passed the Northwest Ordinance, 
        providing for a territorial government for lands northwest of 
        the Ohio River, which declared: ``Religion, morality, and 
        knowledge, being necessary to good government and the happiness 
        of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be 
        encouraged.''.
            (6) On September 25, 1789, the First Congress unanimously 
        approved a resolution calling on President George Washington to 
        proclaim a National Day of Thanksgiving for the people of the 
        United States by declaring, ``a day of public thanksgiving and 
        prayer, to be observed by acknowledging, with grateful hearts, 
        the many signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording 
        them an opportunity peaceably to establish a constitution of 
        government for their safety and happiness.''.
            (7) On November 19, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln 
        delivered his Gettysburg Address on the site of the battle and 
        declared: ``It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the 
        great task remaining before us--that from these honored dead we 
        take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the 
        last full measure of devotion--that we here highly resolve that 
        these dead shall not have died in vain--that this Nation, under 
        God, shall have a new birth of freedom--and that Government of 
        the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish 
        from the earth.''.
            (8) On April 28, 1952, in the decision of the Supreme Court 
        of the United States in Zorach v. Clauson, 343 U.S. 306 (1952), 
        in which school children were allowed to be excused from public 
        schools for religious observances and education, Justice 
        William O. Douglas, in writing for the Court stated: ``The 
        First Amendment, however, does not say that in every and all 
        respects there shall be a separation of  Church and State. 
Rather, it studiously defines the manner, the specific ways, in which 
there shall be no concern or union or dependency one on the other. That 
is the common sense of the matter. Otherwise the State and religion 
would be aliens to each other--hostile, suspicious, and even 
unfriendly. Churches could not be required to pay even property taxes. 
Municipalities would not be permitted to render police or fire 
protection to religious groups. Policemen who helped parishioners into 
their places of worship would violate the Constitution. Prayers in our 
legislative halls; the appeals to the Almighty in the messages of the 
Chief Executive; the proclamations making Thanksgiving Day a holiday; 
`so help me God' in our courtroom oaths--these and all other references 
to the Almighty that run through our laws, our public rituals, our 
ceremonies would be flouting the First Amendment. A fastidious atheist 
or agnostic could even object to the supplication with which the Court 
opens each session: `God save the United States and this Honorable 
Court.'''.
            (9) On June 15, 1954, Congress passed and President 
        Eisenhower signed into law a statute that was clearly 
        consistent with the text and intent of the Constitution of the 
        United States, that amended the Pledge of Allegiance to read: 
        ``I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of 
        America and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation 
        under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.'';
            (10) On July 20, 1956, Congress proclaimed that the 
        national motto of the United States is ``In God We Trust'', and 
        that motto is inscribed above the main door of the Senate, 
        behind the Chair of the Speaker of the House of 
        Representatives, and on the currency of the United States.
            (11) On June 17, 1963, in the decision of the Supreme Court 
        of the United States in Abington School District v. Schempp, 
        374 U.S. 203 (1963), in which compulsory school prayer was held 
        unconstitutional, Justices Goldberg and Harlan, concurring in 
        the decision, stated: ``But untutored devotion to the concept 
        of neutrality can lead to invocation or approval of results 
        which partake not simply of that noninterference and 
        noninvolvement with the religious which the Constitution 
        commands, but of a brooding and pervasive devotion to the 
        secular and a passive, or even active, hostility to the 
        religious. Such results are not only not compelled by the 
        Constitution, but, it seems to me, are prohibited by it. 
        Neither government nor this Court can or should ignore the 
        significance of the fact that a vast portion of our people 
        believe in and worship God and that many of our legal, 
        political, and personal values derive historically from 
        religious teachings. Government must inevitably take cognizance 
        of the existence of religion and, indeed, under certain 
        circumstances the First Amendment may require that it do so.''.
            (12) On March 5, 1984, in the decision of the Supreme Court 
        of the United States in Lynch v. Donelly, 465 U.S. 668 (1984), 
        in which a city government's display of a nativity scene was 
        held to be constitutional, Chief Justice Burger, writing for 
        the Court, stated: ``There is an unbroken history of official 
        acknowledgment by all three branches of government of the role 
        of religion in American life from at least 1789 . . . 
        [E]xamples of reference to our religious heritage are found in 
        the statutorily prescribed national motto `In God We Trust' (36 
        U.S.C. 186), which Congress and the President mandated for our 
        currency, see (31 U.S.C. 5112(d)(1) (1982 ed.)), and in the 
        language `One Nation under God', as part of the Pledge of 
        Allegiance to the American flag. That pledge is recited by many 
        thousands of public school children--and adults--every year . . 
        . Art galleries supported by public revenues display religious 
        paintings of the 15th and 16th centuries, predominantly 
        inspired by one religious faith. The National Gallery in 
        Washington, maintained with Government support, for example, 
        has long exhibited masterpieces with religious messages, 
        notably the Last Supper, and paintings depicting the Birth of 
        Christ, the Crucifixion, and the Resurrection, among many 
        others with explicit Christian themes and messages. The very 
        chamber in which oral arguments on this case were heard is 
        decorated with a notable and permanent--not seasonal--symbol of 
        religion: Moses with the Ten Commandments. Congress has long 
        provided chapels in the Capitol for religious worship and 
        meditation.''.
            (13) On June 4, 1985, in the decision of the Supreme Court 
        of the United States in Wallace v. Jaffree, 472 U.S. 38 (1985), 
        in which a mandatory moment of silence to be used for 
        meditation or voluntary prayer was held unconstitutional, 
        Justice O'Connor, concurring in the judgment and addressing the 
        contention that the Court's holding would render the Pledge of 
        Allegiance unconstitutional because Congress amended it in 1954 
        to add the words ``under God,'' stated ``In my view, the words 
        `under God' in the Pledge, as codified at (36 U.S.C. 172), 
        serve as an acknowledgment of religion with `the legitimate  
secular purposes of solemnizing public occasions, [and] expressing 
confidence in the future.'''.
            (14) On November 20, 1992, the United States Court of 
        Appeals for the 7th Circuit, in Sherman v. Community 
        Consolidated School District 21, 980 F.2d 437 (7th Cir. 1992), 
        held that a school district's policy for voluntary recitation 
        of the Pledge of Allegiance including the words ``under God'' 
        was constitutional.
            (15) The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals erroneously held, in 
        Newdow v. U.S. Congress, (9th Cir. June 26, 2002) that the 
        Pledge of Allegiance's use of the express religious reference 
        ``under God'' violates the First Amendment to the Constitution, 
        and that, therefore, a school district's policy and practice of 
        teacher-led voluntary recitations of the Pledge of Allegiance 
        is unconstitutional.
            (16) The erroneous rationale of the 9th Circuit Court of 
        Appeals in Newdow would lead to the absurd result that the 
        Constitution's use of the express religious reference ``Year of 
        our Lord'' in Article VII violates the First Amendment to the 
        Constitution, and that, therefore, a school district's policy 
        and practice of teacher-led voluntary recitations of the 
        Constitution itself would be unconstitutional.

SEC. 2. ONE NATION UNDER GOD.

    (a) Reaffirmation.--Section 4 of title 4, United States Code, is 
amended to read as follows:
``Sec. 4. Pledge of allegiance to the flag; manner of delivery
    ``The Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag: `I pledge allegiance to the 
Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it 
stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for 
all.', should be rendered by standing at attention facing the flag with 
the right hand over the heart. When not in uniform men should remove 
any non-religious headdress with their right hand and hold it at the 
left shoulder, the hand being over the heart. Persons in uniform should 
remain silent, face the flag, and render the military salute.''.
    (b) Codification.--In codifying this subsection, the Office of the 
Law Revision Counsel shall show in the historical and statutory notes 
that the 107th Congress reaffirmed the exact language that has appeared 
in the Pledge for decades.

SEC. 3. REAFFIRMING THAT GOD REMAINS IN OUR MOTTO.

    (a) Reaffirmation.--Section 302 of title 36, United States Code, is 
amended to read as follows:
``Sec. 302. National motto
    ```In God we trust' is the national motto.''.
    (b) Codification.--In codifying this subsection, the Office of the 
Law Revision Counsel shall make no change in section 302, title 36, 
United States Code, but shall show in the historical and statutory 
notes that the 107th Congress reaffirmed the exact language that has 
appeared in the Motto for decades.




                                                 House Calendar No. 211

107th CONGRESS

  2d Session

                                S. 2690

                          [Report No. 107-659]

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 AN ACT

  To reaffirm the reference to one Nation under God in the Pledge of 
                              Allegiance.

_______________________________________________________________________

                           September 17, 2002

Reported with an amendment, referred to the House Calendar, and ordered 
                             to be printed