A city councilman in Kennewick, Washington is demanding that council meetings open with a prayer to an explicitly Christian God, The Tri-City Herald reports.
John Trumbo proposed that all city council meetings should begin with a prayer “directed in name and reference to the same God addressed in the Founding Fathers’ signatory documents that established this nation.”
When a fellow councilman asked him to define that God more specifically, Trumbo replied that it is “the God of Abraham, the same God who Jesus Christ refers to as his father and is one with him.” He added that anyone who looks at the nation’s capital, with its “depictions of Christian religious scenes and biblical inscriptions” would understand why the Founding Fathers would demand the Christian God be prayed to at city council meetings.
“It’s all over the place and none of it’s Allah and none of it’s Buddha,” he said.
He cites the recent Supreme Court decision, Greece v. Galloway, as proof that the Founders wanted Christian prayers to open meetings. Most Constitutional scholars contend that Greece v. Galloway only allows for Christian prayers to be used so long as prayers by other denominations are also allowed.
Even Brett Harvey, senior counsel for Alliance for Defending Freedom, a group that advocates for a greater religious presence in government, said that Trumbo’s interpretation of the decision was unsound. “I suspect there’d be some legal difficulties in deciding who someone prays to,” he told The Herald.
Trumbo made the proposal at last week’s city council meeting, and he was told that it would be reviewed shortly thereafter. However, two days later, the council informed him that it would be tabling the issue for the foreseeable future, as it had more pressing matters to attend to.
[Image of John Trumbo via Kennewick City Council’s official home page]