Gus Kenworthy
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Republican Lawmakers Side With Trump, Support LGBTQ Discrimination

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More than 50 Republican members of Congress have filed a new brief siding against LGBTQ rights in upcoming Supreme Court cases.

Republican attorneys general from 15 states also sided with the Trump administration to argue the Civil Rights Act doesn’t protect LGBTQ people.

A brief from lawmakers, including eight U.S. senators and 45 House members, implied that LGBTQ individuals seeking job protections under the Civil Rights Act are wrongly exploiting the law.

Written by Timothy Newton and Kenneth Starr, the notorious independent counsel whose investigation led to the impeachment of President Clinton, the brief argues that only Congress should debate and decide on extending civil rights protections to gay, bisexual, or transgender individuals.

“Mindful of this vitally important responsibility delegated to the legislature, the Constitution specifically prescribes the process through which legislation is accomplished,” the brief reads.

But the brief also demeans the plaintiffs bringing actions forward to the court.

Starr and Newton write that Donald Zarda, an employee who said he was fired from a skydiving company for being gay, only came up with that reason after the fact.

“A female client to whom Zarda was strapped for a tandem skydive told her boyfriend that Zarda inappropriately touched her and disclosed his sexual orientation to excuse his behavior. The female client’s boyfriend complained to Altitude Express, who terminated Zarda’s employment,” the brief states.

The brief also misgenders plaintiff Aimee Stephens throughout.

“While working as a funeral director, Stephens informed the funeral home that he intended to transition from male to female and that he would dress as a woman at work.,” the brief relates.

It then argues that a Christian executive with R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes had the right to fire Stephens over her gender identity.

Senators on the friend-of-the-court brief are Marsha Blackburn, Roy Blunt, Mike Braun, John Cornyn, Kevin Cramer, James M. Inhofe, James Lankford, and Mike Lee.

House members are Robert B. Aderholt, Rick W. Allen, Brian Babin, Jim Banks, Andy Biggs, Ted Budd, Michael C. Burgess, Doug Collins, Warren Davidson, Jeff Duncan, Bill Flores, Russ Fulcher, Louie Gohmert, Paul A. Gosar, Glenn Grothman, Michael Guest, Andy Harris, Vicky Hartzler, Jody Hice, George Holding, Richard Hudson, Jim Jordan, Steve King, Doug LaMalfa, Doug Lamborn, Debbie Lesko, Thomas Massie, Mark Meadows, Alex X. Mooney, Ralph Norman, Pete Olson, Gary Palmer, John Ratcliffe, David Rouzer, Van Taylor, Tim Walberg, Mark Walker, Randy K. Weber, Ron Wright, and Ted S. Yoho.

Notably, King this year was stripped of committee assignments for statements supporting white nationalism. The list of lawmakers also includes the far-right Freedom Caucus.

The high court will hear the cases of Zarda, Stephens, and Georgia social worker Gerald Bostock October 8.

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