Gay groups go on record opposing Roberts's nomination
Officials from the gay rights groups Human Rights Campaign, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, National Center for Lesbian Rights, and Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays said Thursday that they will oppose the nomination of John Roberts to the U.S. Supreme Court. "He has denigrated the nature and scope of the constitutional rights to privacy, equal protection, and due process as well as federal government's role in confronting injustice," Matt Foreman, executive director of NGLTF, said in a statement. "I have no doubt he's an accomplished lawyer and an affable dinner companion, but that doesn't make him any less a mortal danger to equal rights for gay people, reproductive freedom, and affirmative action." The confirmation hearings for Roberts, 50, are set to be held before the U.S. Senate on September 6. He is widely expected to be confirmed. For gay men and lesbians, Roberts has become a very perplexing candidate. Conservatives cite his work in the Reagan and first Bush administrations against Roe v. Wade. That case hinged on the same privacy rights that underlie Lawrence v. Texas, which struck down sodomy laws across the country. However, Roberts did pro bono work helping prep the pro-gay civil rights attorneys who won the landmark 1996 Supreme Court decision overturning Colorado's Amendment 2. The 1992 ballot measure prohibited any state or local law protecting gays from discrimination. "Ultimately this is about an individual's right to privacy. From women's rights to religious freedom to civil rights, there is powerful evidence that Judge Roberts would rule against equality," said Joe Solmonese, HRC president.