Bench Memos

Religious-Liberty Scholars for North Dakota’s Measure 3

Bad judges can do crazy things in applying any law, and realization of that fact is apparently fueling opposition to a measure on the ballot in North Dakota on June 12 (Measure 3) that would adopt a state version of the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act. But, as a group of leading religious-liberty scholars point out in a letter, the protections that Measure 3 would provide “have proven to be invaluable tools for promoting justice and freedom for citizens” in the 31 other states that have laws akin to Measure 3. Further, the laws “have not been interpreted in crazy ways that have caused problems for those jurisdictions,” so “there is no reason to think that the experience will be any different in North Dakota.” Sounds sensible to me.

It would seem that North Dakotans can best protect themselves, and religious liberty, by adopting Measure 3 and preventing bad judges. Doing the latter would, of course, offer all sorts of other benefits as well.

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