On June 15, 2004 CNN reported, "The Supreme Court on Monday ruled that a California father could not challenge the Pledge of Allegiance, a decision that sidestepped the broader question of the separation of church and state. The 8-0 ruling by the high court reversed a lower-court decision that teacher-led recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance in public schools is unconstitutional. The case had been brought by an atheist who did not want his third-grade daughter to have to listen to the phrase 'under God' in the oath. In a written statement, Attorney General John Ashcroft praised the ruling, saying it 'ensures that school children in every corner of America can start their day by voluntarily reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.' "