Paul Ryan is pandering to the know-nothings — he is a Republican, after all — by saying that the states should decide whether to have prayer in schools, which would require overturning the 1962 Engel v Vitale ruling. This was in response to a question while campaigning in Utah.
“That’s a constitutional issue of the states,’’ Mr. Ryan told a campaign volunteer during a visit to a Romney for President call center in Orem.
The volunteer, Jenny Free, 40, said she was a mother of nine children and asked Mr. Ryan if “we could give back to the states the right to decide if you want prayer or pledge in the schools.’’
Mr. Ryan called the decision to say a prayer or recite the Pledge of Allegiance a “moral responsibility of parents.’’
“Exactly,” Ms. Free responded, according to footage shot by a television reporter for NBC News, “so I am hoping to try and push that.”
“You know, in Utah, I would think you would have a pretty good chance,’’ Mr. Ryan told her.
First of all, why the hell was he bothering to campaign in Utah? The GOP will win that state by a huge margin. Second, he does what all right wingers do and ignores the distinction between prayer in schools and school-sponsored or mandated prayer. There is lots of prayer in schools. What the Supreme Court said in 1962 was that it was unconstitutional to force kids to recite school-written prayers. If that isn’t unconstitutional, what on earth could possibly be?