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At public meetings, fights over prayer drag on


Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) - It happens every week at meetings in towns, counties and cities nationwide: A lawmaker or religious leader leads a prayer before officials dig into local business.

But citizens are increasingly taking issue with these prayers, some of which have been in place for decades.

At least five lawsuits around the country are actively challenging pre-meeting prayers. Those suits are in California, Florida, Missouri, Pennsylvania and Tennessee.

Lawyers on both sides of the issue say there is a new complaint almost weekly, though they don't always end up in court. Some lawyers believe it's only a matter of time before the U.S. Supreme Court will weigh in to resolve the differences.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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