Arguing that religion “has played a defining role” in American history, the Bush administration urged the U.S. Supreme Court to allow Ten Commandments displays in courthouses.

A brief filed by the Justice Department supports two Kentucky counties accused of violating the First Amendment ban on congressional establishment of religion by posting copies of the Ten Commandments.

As WorldNetDaily reported, the Supreme Court will hear arguments early next year and likely will issue a decision in June that will affect displays in public settings across the country.

“Official acknowledgement and recognition of the Ten Commandments’ influence on American legal history comport with the Establishment Clause,” the administration argued in the brief.

The Kentucky case involves two courthouses in Pulaski and McCreary counties – which displayed the Ten Commandments, the Declaration of Independence, the Magna Carta, the Bill of Rights and other historical documents – and Harlan County, where the school board created a similar display.

Currently, four federal circuit courts and one state Supreme Court hold that displays of Ten Commandments are constitutional, while three federal circuit courts have ruled them unconstitutional.

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