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Texas AG intervenes in cheerleader banner dispute

By: By CHRIS TOMLINSON, Associated Press
By: By CHRIS TOMLINSON, Associated Press

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott says he will defend high school cheerleaders who want to use Bible verses on banners at football games.

Abbott announced Wednesday that he is intervening in a lawsuit that cheerleaders at Kountze High School filed against the school district. The district told the cheerleaders to stop using Bible verses at football games after the Freedom From Religion Foundation complained.

The atheist group argued that using banners with phrases such as, "I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me," violates the First Amendment rule against the government establishing a religion.

Abbott said that since the cheerleaders create the banners without school funding, they qualify as free speech and should not be banned.

A Hardin County judge will hold a hearing on Thursday.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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