WKYT | Lexington, Kentucky | News

Atheist plans to continue challenge to pledge

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - An atheist who challenged the inclusion of the words "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance says he's going to ask a federal appeals court in San Francisco to rehear the case.

The court yesterday upheld references to God in the pledge and on U.S. currency. The judge who wrote the opinion in the 2-1 ruling noted that schools don't require students to recite the pledge.

Michael Newdow (NOO'-dow) says if the appeals court won't rehear the case, he'll appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

He says the argument that the words "under God" weren't placed in the pledge for religious purposes is "bogus."

The same appeals court ruled in his favor in 2002, but the Supreme Court then ruled that Newdow didn't have the legal standing to file the suit on behalf of his daughter. So he filed an identical challenge on behalf of other parents.

California law professor Rory Little says the Supreme Court is unlikely to review this case, because the ruling is the third appellate court decision upholding the pledge.

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