The President’s Faith-Based Initiative: Is It Constitutional? Is It a Good Idea?

Capitol Hill Briefing
March 28, 2003
11:30AM to 1:30PM
B-338 Rayburn House Office Building

Panel 1: Is It Constitutional? Featuring Roger Pilon, Vice President for Legal Affairs and Director, Constitutional Studies, Cato Institute; Barry Lynn, Executive Director, Americans United for the Separation of Church and State; and James Davids, Former Deputy Director, Task Force on Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, Department of Justice.

Panel 2: Is It a Good Idea? Featuring Michael Tanner, Director of Health and Welfare Studies, Cato Institute; and Joseph Loconte, Fellow in Religion and Free Society, Heritage Foundation.

President Bush wants to allow religious and faith-based charities to receive government funding. Some observers believe that those organizations will provide more compassionate and effective assistance to people in need than do traditional government welfare programs. Others raise constitutional questions about the proposal or worry that government funding will undermine private charities. A diverse group of experts will discuss these and other questions surrounding the president’s faith-based initiative.