Idaho state senator defends Hindu prayer walk-out

Monday, March 16, 2015
 | 
Bill Bumpas (OneNewsNow.com)

An Idaho lawmaker is taking some heat, and getting some positive feedback too, for her comments about Hinduism. 

On March 3, the Idaho Senate began the day's session with the first-ever Hindu prayer read by a cleric who was serving as guest chaplain. 

Aware of the Hindu invocation before hand, state Sen. Sheryl Nuxoll exited the floor before the cleric began.

"This is not a religious freedom issue," she says she told her colleagues. "Our state Constitution and federal Constitution are based on Christianity, and that we have a Christian prayer every day, and that I was really opposed to having prayer that wasn't Christian in the senate that morning." 

The Idaho Statesman reported that Nuxoll was one of three state senators, all Republicans, who refused to attend the cleric's invocation. 

The cleric gave a "lengthy prayer" about selflessness and peace, the newspaper reported. 

The state senator was later quoted by reporters as saying, "Hindu is a false faith with false gods," which prompted calls from some religious leaders for an apology.

"I just feel like I can't apologize for something I believe in," she tells OneNewsNow. "I may not have been politically correct in my terminology, on one little sentence, but how can I apologize for what I believe in?"

The majority of constituent feedback has been positive, he says. 

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