State Supreme Court Upholds Results Of Buddhist Temple Election

March 6, 2008

Author: John Lyon

Source: The Buddhist Channel/The Morning News,6012,0,0,1,0

A Sebastian County circuit judge did not violate the U.S. Constitution when he decided who could vote in an election at a Buddhist temple in Fort Smith, the state Supreme Court ruled Thursday.

The Supreme Court upheld the results of the temple's September 2006 election of its board of directors, rejecting arguments that Circuit Judge James Marschewski, now a U.S. magistrate, violated the constitutional separation of church and state in the case.

Marschewski ordered the temple to hold the election to resolve a lawsuit over who should control the temple. A group of temple members filed the suit in 2005, alleging that another faction within the temple had seized control in violation of the temple's 1989 bylaws.