A week after Oklahomans approved a ballot measure to ban sharia law from being applied in the state’s courts, a federal judge blocked the law. It’s not all that surprising. Here’s the word from the WSJ law blog:
Oklahoma City federal Judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange, set a Nov. 22 hearing to consider whether the Save Our State Amendment violates the U.S. Constitution. Until then, she issued a temporary restraining order preventing the state Election Board from certifying State Question 755, which passed by 70 percent last week.
The measure directs state courts to ignore “legal precepts of other nations or cultures” and specifically forbids consideration of “international law or Sharia Law.”
A Muslim activist in Oklahoma City, Muneer Awad, filed suit last week, alleging the measure violated the First Amendment, which forbids government from promoting an “establishment of religion” or interfering with “free exercise” of religion.
So why are we not surprised that Judge Miles-LaGrange ordered the injunction? Because constitutional experts seem to agree that the measure might have serious constitutional problems. “I would like to see Oklahoma politicians explain if this means that the courts can no longer consider the Ten Commandments,” said University of Oklahoma law professor Rick Tepker to CNN last week.
Here’s a little more from the AFP.