NEW YORK, N.Y. — This week Family Equality Council joined with Lambda Legal and 61 other national LGBTQ organizations in a letter urging the Senate Judiciary Committee to reject Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to fill the vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court left by Justice Kennedy’s retirement.
“Justice Kennedy authored numerous landmark decisions that recognized the rights and dignity of the LGBTQ community and allowed us to participate as equal members of society,” said Rev. Stan J. Sloan, CEO of Family Equality Council. “This means the stakes are high for our community regarding who replaces him. Unfortunately, Kavanaugh is not a fair-minded and neutral jurist who will hear cases and issue rulings with impartiality. To the contrary, his record indicates that he would undercut our rights, uphold discrimination against our community, and allow President Trump’s anti-LGBTQ agenda to withstand judicial scrutiny.”
The letter outlines the LGBTQ community’s specific concerns regarding Kavanaugh. Based on the information that has been made publicly available thus far, Kavanagh’s record indicates a narrow view of personal liberty would roll back legal protections for LGBTQ individuals and our families; a belief that courts should show unquestioning deference to a religious organization’s claim that a government requirement substantially burdens its religious belief, which would allow sweeping discriminatory actions by religious organizations; a hostility toward the Affordable Care Act that suggests he would gut protections for the LGBTQ community — especially transgender people and people living with HIV; an excessive deference to presidential authority that calls into question his neutrality when issues such as the military ban on transgender servicemembers come before the Supreme Court; and a record of supporting the interests of the rich and powerful that shows he is likely to side with employers over employees in employment discrimination and other cases that impact the economic well-being of the LGBTQ community.
Further, the lack of transparency surrounding his full record is cause for concern, as documents have not been released that would show the extent of Kavanaugh’s role in President Bush’s endorsement of the discriminatory Federal Marriage Amendment as well as his views on a number of other civil rights issues while he served as Bush’s White House counsel. From everything that is known, Judge Kavanaugh is at odds with the Constitutional guarantees of equality, liberty, and dignity for the LGBTQ community and other at-risk communities. For these reasons, Family Equality Council will continue to oppose his confirmation and urges members of the LGBTQ community to continue calling their Senators and to request they vote against him.