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Lost U.S. Courts of Appeals

City of Bloomfield v. Felix

Town sued for allowing private citizens to erect numerous historical monuments, including a Ten Commandments monument, on City Hall lawn..

Will the Ten Commandments Get a Hearing at the U.S. Supreme Court?

Summary

In an effort to beautify the city, officials in Bloomfield, New Mexico decided to create a public forum to give private citizens the opportunity to pay for and erect historical monuments on the City Hall Lawn. Eventually a variety of privately-funded monuments were displayed, including monuments containing the Declaration of Independence, Gettysburg Address, Bill of Rights, and the Ten Commandments. Each monument included the name of the donors and explains the displayed document’s significance in America's history.

Two individuals complained that the Ten Commandments monument violated the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution and filed a lawsuit against the City of Bloomfield.

In July 2017, ADF attorneys and co-counsel, Wilmar Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr LLP, petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to take up the case. Unfortunately, in October 2017 the high court denied review of the case.

What's at stake

The public display of historical religious monuments by private individuals on government property

The preservation of freedom of speech in the face of one "offended" person’s demands for censorship

Our role in this case

Alliance Defending Freedom represents the City of Bloomfield, New Mexico in its defense of the monument forum.

Case Documents

Court
Title
Date
U.S. Supreme Court
9/22/2017
Appellate Court
2/6/2017
U.S. Supreme Court
7/6/2017
Appellate Court
11/9/2016
Trial Court
8/22/2014
Trial Court
8/22/2014
Trial Court
8/7/2014
Trial Court
6/19/2014
Trial Court
3/22/2012
Trial Court
2/8/2012

Additional Resources

Case Profiles

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David A. Cortman
David A. Cortman
Senior Counsel, Vice President of U.S. Litigation
David A. Cortman serves as senior counsel and vice president of U.S. litigation with Alliance Defending Freedom.
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Jonathan Scruggs
Jonathan Scruggs
Senior Counsel, Vice President of Litigation Strategy & Center for Conscience Initiatives
Jonathan Scruggs serves as senior counsel and vice president of litigation strategy and the Center for Conscience Initiatives with Alliance Defending Freedom.