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Lawmakers turn backs during opening prayer: Did they have good reason?

ByPimpHesus

Mar 16, 2023
(Image by max leroy from Pixabay)

(Image by max leroy from Pixabay)

(FAITHWIRE) — Republican lawmakers in the North Dakota state Senate turned their backs on a chaplain last month as she led the politicians in prayer in a display that has since garnered local media attention.

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“I just didn’t expect it,” Rev. Dr. Leanne Simmons, pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Bismarck, told KFYR-TV. “When I saw it, though, my first reaction was, ‘Oh, that looks really ugly.’”

As is customary at the start of each floor session, Simmons — one of many local religious leaders to deliver the invocation inside the state Capitol — began praying over the Senate Feb. 8, when state Sens. Michael Wobbema (R) and Janne Myrdal (R) turned away from the minister as she spoke.

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