This is a follow up to a post from June 15, 2010. I am pleased to report that Shimkus is still tweeting Bible verses (https://twitter.com/RepShimkus) and his followers have grown to over 15,000! Below is the original post in it’s entirety.
Read the full story here (CNN). The issue is over Rep John Shimkus (R- IL) posting Bible verses daily on his Twitter account. Political activist Barry Lynn claims that Shimkus tweeting Bible verses is a violation of separation of church and state. My argument is that the only people reading the verses are the 3,000 or so followers who subscribe to receive the tweets. There is no violation here. Hundreds of comments took the same or similar positions, including those of atheists, agnostics, and those simply identifying themselves as non-Christian.
The establishment clause states that Congress shall make no law establishing a religion. Sending personal tweets is not a legislative procedure. Shimkus is also granted the first amendment right to express himself and exercise his religious beliefs freely. Again, he is not quoting the Bible on the floor of Congress but in tweets read by his followers. Does anyone care to weigh in, or is this matter too cut and dried to debate?