Today the Senate confirmed Judge Gorsuch to the Supreme Court of the United States. He will be sworn into office on Monday. Equality Federation had previously expressed concern about Gorsuch’s record and personal philosophy, and those concerns were only amplified during the Judge’s confirmation hearings.
“Throughout his career, Judge Gorsuch has repeatedly undermined the rights of LGBTQ Americans, and we are very disappointed that he was confirmed today,” said Rebecca Isaacs, Executive Director. “Now, moving forward, we call upon him to search his soul and do what is right to uphold the core American principles of fairness and equality for all.”
As the Trump Administration continues to appoint and confirm a team people who are dangerously hostile toward LGBTQ people and other marginalized groups including women, immigrants, Muslims, and people of color, Equality Federation will keep building power in the states to win equality in every community.
Examples of Gorsuch’s long and troubling career opposing civil rights, including for LGBTQ people (via HRC):
- Gorsuch’s 2004 dissertation from Oxford University revealed that he did not think the United States Constitution protected the right to marriage equality.
- Gorsuch called marriage equality part of the liberal social agenda, saying, “American liberals have become addicted to the courtroom… as the primary means of effecting their social agenda on everything from gay marriage to assisted suicide…”
- He joined the Tenth Circuit’s decision in Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius, which asserted that that some private corporations are “people” under federal law and have a right to deny basic healthcare coverage if it violates their religious belief. This expansive ruling could allow employers to deny transgender employees access to hormone treatment, access to birth control and other crucial health care for LGBTQ people.
- Hobby Lobby could have negative long-term consequences beyond health care for the LGBTQ community. There are those who are already trying to use the decision to advance discrimination against LGBTQ workers.
- In 2015, Gorsuch joined a ruling against a transgender woman who was denied consistent access to hormone therapy while incarcerated. The ruling dismissed the prisoner’s claims that the denial of care amounted to cruel and unusual punishment under the U.S. Constitution.
- He has advocated for eliminating Chevron deference, a critical administrative law doctrine that allows our federal system of regulations to function, which could result in the significant loss protections for LGBTQ people.