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Kavanaugh refuses to confirm Obergefell correctly decided
2018-09-07

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NCLR Statement by Legal Director Shannon Minter, who was on the team of attorneys to win Obergefell:

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Last night, President Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Judge Brett Kavanaugh, declined to answer U.S. Senator Kamala Harris ( D-Calif. ) when asked whether Obergefell v. Hodges, the 2015 U.S. Supreme Court marriage equality decision, was correctly decided. National Center for Lesbian Rights ( NCLR ) Legal Director Shannon Minter, who was on the team of attorneys to win Obergefell, issued the following statement in response:

"Brett Kavanaugh's refusal to confirm that Obergefell was correctly decided is chilling and poses an unprecedented threat to the liberty and equality of LGBT people. It is also a threat to the stability of constitutional law and the Court's respect for its own precedent. He is willing to throw into question not only Obergefell and the right of same-sex couples to marry, but the Court's commitment that it will respect prior decisions as settled law unless there are compelling reasons to reverse course.

"Obergefell held that sexual orientation is not a legitimate basis for governmental discrimination and that fundamental freedoms belong to all people. Three decades of Supreme Court precedents have now affirmed these basic principles.

"No nominee who refuses to acknowledge them should sit on our nation's highest court."

HRC: Kavanaugh's Refusal to Answer Basic Questions On Obergefell is Unacceptable, Reveals Threat he Poses to LGBTQ People

WASHINGTON — Today, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ), the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer ( LGBTQ ) civil rights organization, responded to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh's repeated refusal to answer basic questions from Senator Kamala Harris on whether the landmark Supreme Court case Obergefell v. Hodges, legalizing marriage equality throughout the United States, was decided correctly.

"Brett Kavanaugh's refusal to answer very basic, very direct questions about the Supreme Court's historic ruling bringing marriage equality nationwide is alarming and completely unacceptable," said HRC President Chad Griffin. "The Obergefell decision is settled law. If this nominee cannot so much as affirm that or the fundamental equality of LGBTQ people and our families, he should not and must not be granted a lifetime appointment to our nation's highest court."

Last month, the Human Rights Campaign released a comprehensive report on the threats Brett Kavanaugh poses to LGBTQ people. This was followed by the release of videos featuring Lillian, a young transgender woman in Alaska, and Laura, a resident of Maine and mother of a transgender son, Jack; both videos focus on the threats to the safety and dignity of LGBTQ people by this nomination. HRC has also mobilized more than 20,000 calls to the Senate demanding Kavanaugh be held accountable on views regarding LGBTQ people.

From non-discrimination protections to health care to LGBTQ military service, Kavanaugh is a nominee clearly hand-picked by anti-LGBTQ organizations to undermine the progress for equality.

The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

—From press releases


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