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That's what CNN's reporting, anyhow -- that Rick Perry, who called for that ''day of prayer and fasting" down in Houston on August 6 and has been the face of the franchise, could wind up on the sidelines during The Response at Reliant Stadium. That's according to Eric Bearse, spokesman for the American Family Association, tells the network: "There will be a handful of speakers, in addition to a number of folks leading prayer, plus some time for praise and worship music. Whether the governor will speak has not yet been decided at this point." Oh, really? But who believes what the AFA has to say anyway?
That soundbite comes just as the ACLU of Texas is asking the governor's office -- not to mention seemingly every government agency in Houston -- to see records related to the event; a handful of open-records requests were filed only yesterday to see if there were "tax-payer dollars and other state or local government resources used to promote the prayer event." One week ago, to the day, is when Freedom From Religion Foundation filed its lawsuit insisting the event violates the First Amendment clause separating church and state.
Says Lisa Graybill, legal director of the ACLU of Texas, "We are concerned that Gov. Perry is using public office to endorse a sectarian religious event and to advance specific Christian beliefs. We are seeking information on the degree to which state resources have been or will be used for the planning and promotion of this event and for state officials' participation in it."