Bowen v. Kendrick

In Bowen v. Kendrick, 487 U.S. 589, 593, 596-97, 108 S.Ct. 2562, 101 L.Ed.2d 520 (1988) the Supreme Court allowed a group of federal taxpayers to challenge the Adolescent Family Life Act, a statute appropriating funds for religious organizations, among others, to fight teen pregnancy. The Court found that plaintiffs' claim challenged a program expressly authorized by Congress under the taxing and spending power, thus fitting within Flast v. Cohen, 392 U.S. 83, 88 S.Ct. 1942, 20 L.Ed.2d 947 (1968). Id. at 619, 108 S.Ct. 2562. The key to Bowen's conclusion, as the Court has subsequently explained, was that the statute was "`at heart a program of disbursement of funds pursuant to Congress' taxing and spending powers'" and that plaintiffs' claims were concerned with the expenditure of funds "`pursuant to the AFLA's statutory mandate.'" Bowen, 487 U.S. at 619-20, 108 S.Ct. 2562.