It's disappointing, but comes as no real surprise. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has declared the long-standing war memorial cross on top of a San Diego mountain unconstitutional - a violation of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.
As you may recall, we've been involved in this case for years - fighting to ensure that the cross survives legal challenges that now span decades.
The decision represents a judicial slap in the face to the countless military veterans honored by this memorial. This is a flawed decision that not only strikes at the heart of honoring our military veterans, it reaches a faulty conclusion that this iconic memorial - part of the historic landscape of San Diego - is unconstitutional.
We filed an amicus brief with the 9th circuit in this case - nearly two years ago. We represented 25 members of Congress, and now with this latest decision, we will stand ready to defend and support this memorial once again - either at the 9th circuit if the appeals court decided to have the case heard by the full panel, or at the Supreme Court of the United States, where this case ultimately is likely to end up.
Rest assured, we will continue with this fight. The appeals court got this one wrong. And, now while this already lengthy legal battle will be extended, we're confident that at the end of the road - the war memorial cross in San Diego will survive as a powerful symbol honoring our military veterans.