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Gazette Premium Content Texas laymakers OK 'Merry Christmas' bill

The Associated Press Updated: May 8, 2013 at 7:13 pm

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — On the brink of summer, defending Christmas is on the wish list of the Texas Legislature.

The House on Wednesday approved a bipartisan bill that aims to remove legal risks of saying "Merry Christmas" in Texas public schools. Traditional holiday symbols, such as a menorah or nativity scene, would also win a nod of state support so long as more than one religion and a secular symbol are also reflected.

State Rep. Dwayne Bohac says the bill seeks to protect schools from "ridiculous" lawsuits. Says the Houston Republican: "Teachers are fearful of calling a Christmas tree a Christmas tree."

Several Santa Claus impersonators were in the House gallery when the bill came up. They rang sleigh bells upon passage.

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