The Blaine Amendment: Harbinger of Secularism?

By Gerard V. Bradley
February 03, 2007
In August 1876, both houses of Congress voted on a series of proposals to amend the United States Constitution. These related proposals were united by their aim to prohibit states from giving financial aid to “sectarian” schools and came to be known collectively as “the Blaine Amendment,” named after one of their foremost proponents. The House of Representatives passed one such proposal by an overwhelming majority, but in the Senate, the proposal failed to obtain the two-thirds approval necessary to present an amendment to the states for ratification....