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Representative wants to make Pledge of Allegiance mandatory

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Posted at 2:56 AM, Dec 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-05 04:56:33-05

PHOENIX — State Rep. John Fillmore introduced legislation that would require students to recite the pledge each morning unless a parent excuses them.

The representative from Apache Junction's law says schools would also be required to set aside at least a minute each day for "quiet reflection and moral reasoning."

Arizona schools are already required by law to have a set time for student to say the pledge, but participation isn't mandatory.

The American Civil Liberties Union has said the proposal is unconstitutional.

The Supreme Court ruling in West Virginia Board of Education v. Barnette said that the First Amendment protects students from being forced to say the pledge.

The bill may be considered by the Arizona House of Representatives in January 2020.

It is unclear if the proposed law would include require students to say the phrase "under God," which was added to the pledge in 1954 and has been the subject of numerous lawsuits.

Fillmore currently is a member of the Education committee. He has served as a state representative since 2011.