A bill voted on last week passed 8-5, allowing the bill to go forward which could make the Bible Louisiana's state book. State Representative Thomas Carmody said "The Holy Bible would be appropriate for the state of Louisiana." He cited the reason being the religious history of the state and noted that this bill would not make Christianity the state religion.
Some disagree saying that having the Bible as the state book is the same as having Christianity as the official religion. "You cannot separate Christianity from the Bible," said Representative Wesley Bishop. "If you adopt the Bible as the official state book, you also adopt Christianity as the state religion…We are going to open ourselves up to a lawsuit." Declaring a state religion is prohibited under the U.S. Constitution.
Some representatives are calling the bill offensive while others are debating which version of the Bible should be chosen. Representative Robert Billiot said "Why not put all versions of the Bible? If there's one, what are we saying about the rest of the people?" While others still are calling to include more religions like Representative Ebony Woodruff who suggested Carmody add "all books of faith like the Quran, the Torah."
Catholics make up the majority of Louisiana's religious population with 1,200,900 in 2010. Many of the early settlers were French Creole who had a strong Catholic influence throughout Louisiana's history. 60% of the adult population consider themselves Protestant today. Carmody cites the religious history and current religious influence as the Bible being "the appropriate symbol" for the state.