Oklahoma Supreme Court orders removal of Ten Commandments monument

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 30, 2015 12:16 PM

OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters) - The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that a Ten Commandments monument placed on state capitol grounds must be removed because the Oklahoma Constitution bans the use of state property for the benefit of a religion.

The 6-foot-tall (1.8-meter) stone monument, paid for with private money and supported by lawmakers in the socially conservative state, was installed in 2012, prompting complaints that it violated the U.S. Constitution's provisions against government establishment of religion, as well as local laws.

In a 7-2 decision, the court said the placement of the monument violated a section in the state's constitution, which says no public money or property can be used either directly or indirectly for the "benefit, or support of any sect, church, denomination, or system of religion."

(Reporting by Heide Brandes; Writing by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Bill Trott)