Change of Heart

March 17, 2004 1 min read

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote the memorandum at left to Justice Harry A. Blackmun to let him know that after initially voting in the case of Lee v. Weisman to uphold the practice of clergy-led prayers at public school graduation ceremonies, he had changed his mind. With Justice Kennedy changing sides, it would now be a 5-4 decision that such prayers were an unconstitutional government establishment of religion. Justice Blackmun, as the senior justice on what was now the winning side, decided to allow Justice Kennedy’s draft to become the majority opinion. After further internal exchanges of ideas, it was issued on June 24, 1992.