U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu has introduced a bill, that if passed, would make it against the law for the federal government to take away money from programs whose participants engage in voluntary religious activity.

Landrieu's bill is called the "Freedom to Pray Act".  Landrieu says she drafted it after being told by a constituent in 2012 that the Young Marines program in Bossier Parish might lose federal funding due to voluntary religious speech.

KPEL interviewed Bossier Sheriff Julian Whittington on "Mornings With Ken and Bernie".  He told us that they have been doing this rehabilitation program for years, and they have never had a problem.

Whittington told the federal government to keep their money.  In the Young Marines oath, which is voluntary for Whittington's participants, there is a part mentioning not dishonoring God.

Majorie Esman, executive director of the Louisiana American Civil Liberties Union, says the the national website says members must attend church and pledge not to dishonor God.

Whittington says they do not mandate that participants do any activities related to religion that they do not want to do.

Landrieu's bill would ban the federal government from defunding such programs.