U.S. Supreme Court justices on Wednesday appeared sympathetic to a church that sued Missouri for denying it state taxpayer funds for a playground project in a closely watched religious rights case involving public money going to religious entities.
Both conservative and liberal justices on the nine-member court indicated that Trinity Lutheran Church in Columbia, Missouri should be allowed to apply for the state grant program that helps nonprofit groups buy rubber playground surfaces made from recycled tires.
The case, which tests the limits of religious freedom under the U.S. Constitution, is considered one of the most important to come before the court during its current term.
The church, whose legal effort was spearheaded by the Alliance Defending Freedom conservative Christian activist group, could be headed for a lopsided win, with liberals Elena Kagan and Stephen Breyer joining their conservative colleagues in hinting at their support.
"It seems to me ... this is a clear burden on a constitutional right," said Kagan in reference to the state prohibition.
Full story in article.