A federal appeals court in San Francisco upheld the use of the words "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance and "In God We Trust" on U.S. currency, rejecting arguments on Thursday that the phrases violate the separation of church and state.
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel rejected two legal challenges by Sacramento atheist Michael Newdow, who claimed the references to God disrespect his religious beliefs.
"The Pledge is constitutional," Judge Carlos Bea wrote for the majority in the 2-1 ruling. "The Pledge of Allegiance serves to unite our vast nation through the proud recitation of some of the ideals upon which our Republic was founded."
The same court ruled in Newdow's favor in 2002 after he sued his daughter's school district for having students recite the pledge at school.
Most interestingly, this decision came from the uber liberal 9th Circuit in San Francisco. If this court is unsympathetic to Newdow, it's unlikely he's going to find one that is.