For a brief chronological summary read the 4 points below from the bottom (#1) to top (#4.)
4.  new  2016/10/13   In 2011 the  Bill passed (Point #2) but it did not change the Constitution .  In 2012 the amendment failed (Point #3). 
3.  2012/09/24  This became a ballot amendment to FL Constitution failed to get 62% of the vote on Nov 6, 2012. - see this point-counter-point article:  on why it should be passed.
2.  2011/07/01  The Bill passed   [ This page permanent link]  but does not superceed the Florida Constitution.  See  Article I. SECTION 3.  Religious freedom .  This Article still includes the bad "Blaine Amendment verbage" i.e. opposite to the text below.
1.  2011/03/22    This page was Updated for 2011 Session by the HJR 1471 - Religious Freedom ACT .  Read the text and tell your friends to vote YES on this bill.

CCFLA Banner
For Immediate Release
February 26, 2010
CONTACT: Kelsey Wohlman 850-488-0256
Christine Wayne 321-752-3138

Rep. Steve Precourt and Sen. Thad Altman Unveil "Religious Freedom Act"

Repealing the Blaine Amendment in Florida's Constitution

Steve Precourt

Tallahassee, FL - Rep. Steve Precourt (R-Orlando) today introduced House Joint Resolution (HJR) 1399, also known as the Religious Freedom Act, an amendment to Florida's constitution repealing discriminatory Blaine Amendments which bar access to public aid and limit religious freedom.  The proposed constitutional amendment, also sponsored by Senator Thad Altman (R-Melbourne) Senate Joint Resolution (SJR) 2550, repeals a limit on the power of the state to spend funds directly or indirectly in aid of sectarian institutions.

 "Blaine Amendments are antiquated constitutional tenants rooted in bigotry that go far beyond the separation of church and state envisioned by our founding fathers," said Representative Precourt.  "If we don't take action now, millions of dollars in quality state programs - from Bright Futures to Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten - will be jeopardized."

Thad Altman

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in Mitchell v. Helms that Blaine Amendments have "a shameful pedigree that we do not hesitate to disavow" and represent a "doctrine, born of bigotry, [that] should be buried now."

Though this proposed amendment will remove a limit on the power of the state to spend funds, the state will continue to be limited by the Establishment Clauses of the Florida and U.S. Constitutions.  Under the Establishment Clauses, government aid may not result in governmental indoctrination, define its recipients by reference to religion, or create an excessive entanglement.

 "People in private organizations should not be disenfranchised from working with the public sector on some of society's most difficult problems," said Senator Altman.  "This constitutional amendment restores the way America was envisioned to work," concluded Altman.

 The proposed constitutional amendment will read:

Proposing an amendment to the State Constitution to provide that an individual or entity may not be barred from participating in any public program because of religion and to delete the prohibition against using revenues from the public treasury directly or indirectly in aid of any church, sect, or religious denomination or in aid of any sectarian institution.


Precourt Press Release
Please help us support this joint resolution as it moves through the legislative process in Tallahassee in the coming months!

- Bill Stephens

This email was sent by bstephens(a) .
Christian Coalition of Florida | P. O. Box 520578 | Longwood | FL | 32752