Judge gives state 30 days to remove Ten Commandments monument

    (AP) -- An Oklahoma County judge has ordered that a Ten Commandments monument on the grounds of the state Capitol be removed within 30 days.

    District Judge Thomas Prince handed down the order Friday and gave state officials until October 12 to take down the 6-foot-tall granite monument.

    Prince issued the ruling after denying a motion filed by Attorney General Scott Pruitt's office alleging that the Oklahoma Supreme Court's June 30 order to remove the monument expressed an unconstitutional hostility toward religion. Pruitt said the Oklahoma Supreme Court's decision has created a hostility toward religion.

    "The Legislature should give voters the opportunity to rectify this problem by allowing Oklahomans to vote on removing Article II, Section 5 from the Oklahoma Constitution. I fully support removal of this provision of the Oklahoma Constitution in order to reconcile the conflict" Pruitt said.

    The court ruled the monument is a religious symbol and must be removed from the Capitol grounds because it violates a state constitutional ban on using public property for the benefit of religion.

    The monument was authorized by the Legislature in 2009 and was erected in 2012.

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