Senate State Affairs Committee advances religious student group bill
BOISE, Idaho (AP) -- Leaders of student religious groups at Idaho's public universities for several years have lobbied for the right to restrict leadership positions to those committed to their faith.
The Senate State Affairs Committee approved a bill along party lines Monday that allows religious student groups to do just that. At the same time, the legislation bars universities from denying official recognition and other benefits to those faith-based organizations.
Several members of Christian groups at Boise State University urged lawmakers to support the bill, saying it's essential to the group's mission to have leaders who are devout.
But University of Idaho lawyer Kent Nelson says the bill creates fairness problems and could actually put administrators in a position of discriminating against other student groups.
Several other states are now considering similar legislation.