North Carolina is in the news again. North Carolina Republicans are reportedly seeking to declare an official state religion and exempt the state from the Constitution and court rulings via the Defense of Religion Act 2013. This comes days after GOP state Reps. Austin Allran and Warren Daniel proposed the Healthy Marriage Act that would impose more rigorous requirements for divorce, including a two year waiting and counseling. The latest bill’s (H.J.R. 494) main sponsors are Reps. Carl Ford (R-China Grove) and Harry Warren (R-Salisbury), with House Majority Leader Edgar Starnes (R-Hickory) as a co-sponsor, The Salisbury Post reported.
The bill, filed Monday by two GOP lawmakers from Rowan County and backed by nine other Republicans, says each state “is sovereign” and courts cannot block a state “from making laws respecting an establishment of religion.” The legislation was filed in response to a lawsuit to stop county commissioners in Rowan County from opening meetings with a Christian prayer, wral.com reported.
The religion bill comes as some Republican-led states seek to separate themselves from the federal government, primarily on the issues of guns and Obamacare. This includes a proposal in Mississippi to establish a state board with the power to nullify federal laws.