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Florida lawmaker offended by morning prayers

(Miami Herald) Friday’s morning House Session opened as it usually does. A religious leader invited by a House member offers a prayer for guidance to the lawmakers. And as usually happens, the reverend, invited on Friday by Rep. Richard Corcoran, R-Land O’Lakes, concluded “we ask these things in the name, and through the merits of Jesus Christ, thy son and savior, amen.”

But that final invocation of Jesus Christ is a growing concern for Jewish members, according to Rep. Jim Waldman, D-Coconut Creek.

Minutes before session began, Waldman, who is Jewish, met with Florida House Speaker Will Weatherford, a conservative Christian, and told him that some Jewish members were offended.

“This year more so than others, every time the prayer comes up, it’s in Jesus’ name,” Waldman told Weatherford. “This is my seventh year talking about it, and it’s getting to be too much. It would be nice to have an inclusive prayer.”