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Judge lets Pa. 'Year of the Bible' stand

Oct. 2, 2012 at 3:51 PM

HARRISBURG, Pa., Oct. 2 (UPI) -- A Pennsylvania judge tossed a lawsuit by atheists challenging state lawmakers' declaration that 2012 is the "Year of the Bible."

U.S. District Judge Christopher Conner wasn't all that kind to the measure's proponents, who he chastised for "pandering" and writing an "exclusionary" resolution that was a waste of time.

"At worst, it is premeditated pandering designed to provide a re-election sound bite for use by members of the General Assembly," Connor wrote in his decision. "At a time when the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania faces massive public policy challenges, these resources would be far better utilized in meaningful legislative efforts for the benefit all of the citizens of the Commonwealth, regardless of their religious beliefs."

Despite the rebuke, the resolution's author, Republican state Rep. Rick Saccone, lauded the verdict.

"Praise the Lord," he told The Philadelphia Inquirer. "What we did was not novel or controversial. It recognized the role of the Bible in history."

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