Bad Day for Colorado’s Solicitor General, Good Day for Supreme Court and Religious Liberty

Twitter and censorship is not the only really important story brewing across the nation these days, there are significant rumblings happening over at the Supreme Court.

On Monday, the Justices heard oral arguments in a case that focuses on a web designer who had religious objection to making a website for same-sex couples. 

Lorie Smith runs a company called 303 Creative that is based in Colorado. That state could now be considered ground zero for religious liberty cases.

In the oral argument, the conservative justices seemed to side with Smith who as made the case that it violates her religious beliefs to be forced to make websites for gay marriages. 

One of the first markers showing where the justices were leaning came from Justice Amy Coney Barrett. Her argument brought about a non-sensical response from the Colorado Solicitor General.

Barrett: Can a designer decline to serve a Catholic club because they disagree w/ their views on marriage? 

Solicitor: Yes it’s not status based discrimination 

Barrett: But the designer can’t decline to do a SSM design? Soliciter: Yes because SSM is inextricably intertwined with status (& religion isn’t).

You probably need to do better than that with the Supreme Court. 

But the best exchange came from Justice Neil Gorsuch. He asked the solicitor general about Jack Phillip’s case and he perfectly exposed the real nature of Colorado’s dystopian laws. 

Gorsuch: “Jack Phillips [the cake baker in Masterpiece Cakeshop] had to go through a reeducation program, did he not?”

CO Solicitor General: “It was a training to educate him about Colorado law.

Gorsuch: “Some might be excused for calling that a reeducation program.”

Gorsuch had to correct the solicitor general’s description of the case and then he addressed the state law on protection of religious liberty. 

All in all, it wasn’t a good day for the solicitor general.