Republicans seize on Pledge decision
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Hours after a federal appeals court Wednesday declared the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional, the Republican political machine in Washington geared up to fight the decision.
The National Republican Campaign Committee (NRCC), which coordinates Republican congressional campaign efforts, was set to send a memo to every Republican member of Congress and those running for Congress Wednesday afternoon.
The memo will urge Republicans to contact their local school boards and tell them to "nullify this decision" and urge them to allow the Pledge of Allegiance to be recited as it is in classrooms tomorrow morning, according to a spokesman for the NRCC, Steve Schmidt.
"This is nonsense," Schmidt said.
Schmidt said the memo will also urge Republicans to "blame liberal Tom Daschle for holding up judicial nominees."
"This is what you get" when you don't fill those voids, Schmidt added.
House Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Illinois, also said it underscores the need for the Senate to confirm "some common sense jurists."
In a statement, Haster said:
"Obviously, the liberal court in San Francisco has gotten this one wrong. Of course, we are one nation, under God. The Pledge of Allegiance is a patriotic salute that brings people of all faiths together to share in the American spirit.
"I strongly believe that parents, teachers and local schools should encourage children to recite the pledge to start the day, the same way those of us in Congress begin our daily business, not allow a liberal judge to take it away. It's time for the Senate to move forward and confirm some common-sense jurists," he said.
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