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New Jersey Gets Rid Of “So Help Me God” In Oath For Public Office

New Jersey has fallen.

The state of New Jersey has decided to get rid of its requirement for candidates to sign an oath that includes the phrase “so help me God”.

The move by New Jersey was made after a man who identifies as a “nontheist” sued the state for violating his First Amendment Freedoms.

Since the lawsuit took place candidates now “The petitioner has the option to make a solemn affirmation or declaration in lieu of an oath.”

Here’s what The Blaze reported:

New Jersey has discarded its requirement that candidates running for public office sign an oath including the phrase “so help me God,” reported Wednesday.

In October, 70-year-old James Tosone of Bergen County filed a federal lawsuit against Secretary of State Tahesha Way, accusing New Jersey of forcing candidates to swear to a religious oath. Tosone, who describes himself as a “nontheist,” alleged that the state’s requirement violates First Amendment freedoms.

“While Mr. Tosone previously completed the candidate petition in order to participate in past elections, he now sincerely believes, as a matter of conscience, that he cannot swear ‘so help me God,'” the lawsuit stated.

The New Jersey statute mandated candidates to swear to abide by the United States’ and the state’s constitutions, requiring that they “give assurance of fidelity and attachment to the government.”

“By requiring plaintiff to swear ‘so help me God,’ in order to run for public office, without a secular option, the secretary of state has inflicted, and will continue to inflict, irreparable harm upon [Tosone],” the complaint alleged.

In an October 24 memo to county clerks, acting director of the state’s Division of Elections Lauren Zyriek wrote, “The petitioner has the option to make a solemn affirmation or declaration in lieu of an oath.”

Per NBC Philadelphia:

New Jersey is dropping its requirement that candidates for office sign an oath that includes the words “so help me God” in filing paperwork for their candidacy. reported Wednesday that the state Division of Elections is no longer requiring candidates to sign that oath, allowing them to make “a solemn affirmation or declaration” instead.

The state was being sued by James Tosone, a 70-year-old northern New Jersey man who said he plans to run for Congress in 2024 as a Libertarian. But as a nontheist, he said, he cannot sign part of the petition including a religious oath.

In an Oct. 24 memo to all county clerks in New Jersey, Lauren Zyriek, acting director of the state’s Division of Elections, said the religious oath is no longer required.

“In the affirmation or declaration, the words ‘so help me God’ shall be omitted,” the memo reads.



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