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Biden Condemns SCOTUS Ruling Allowing Anti-LGBTQ+ Discrimination

Biden Condemns SCOTUS Ruling Allowing Anti-LGBTQ+ Discrimination

President Joe Biden

The ruling in 303 Creative v. Elenis is limited in scope, but the president says he's "deeply concerned" that it could invite more discrimination.

President Joe Biden has condemned Friday’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the case of a Colorado website designer who wishes to limit her wedding-related business to opposite-sex couples. The court held 6-3 that her First Amendment rights prohibit the state, under its antidiscrimination law, from forcing her “to create expressive designs speaking messages with which the designer disagrees.”

“In America, no person should face discrimination simply because of who they are or who they love,” says a statement from Biden. “The Supreme Court’s disappointing decision in 303 Creative LLC v. Elenis undermines that basic truth, and painfully it comes during Pride month when millions of Americans across the country join together to celebrate the contributions, resilience, and strength of the LGBTQI+ community. While the Court’s decision only addresses expressive original designs, I’m deeply concerned that the decision could invite more discrimination against LGBTQI+ Americans. More broadly, today’s decision weakens long-standing laws that protect all Americans against discrimination in public accommodations — including people of color, people with disabilities, people of faith, and women."

Biden added that he and his administration were still going to enforce federal anti-discrimination laws protecting queer Americans, adding that they would work with states to uphold those protections.

“When one group’s dignity and equality are threatened, the promise of our democracy is threatened and we all suffer. Our work to advance equal rights for everyone will continue,” he said, “That is why we must pass the Equality Act, which will enshrine civil rights protections for LGBTQI+ Americans in federal law and strengthen public accommodations protections for all Americans. I urge Congress to swiftly send this legislation to my desk.”

The Equality Act was recently reintroduced in both the House and Senate. In earlier sessions of Congress, it has been passed by the House twice — in 2019 and 2021 — but has stalled in the Senate. The Senate now has a Democratic majority, albeit a narrow one, but the House has a slight Republican majority, so the legislation faces an uphill battle there.

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