After the United States Supreme Court ruled on Monday that gay and transgender employees are protected from discrimination in the workplace, President Trump said the White House would “live with their decision.”
“I’ve read the decision, and some people were surprised,” the president said, according to The Hill. “But they’ve ruled and we live with their decision.
“That’s what it’s all about. We live with the decision of the Supreme Court,” he said of the 6-3 decision, in which Justice Neil Gorsuch, Trump’s first SCOTUS appointment, sided with the liberal majority and wrote the opinion.
“Very powerful. Very powerful decision actually,” Trump added. “But they have so ruled.”
Last year, we reported that ADF had filed a petition asking the Supreme Court to take the case of a Michigan funeral home forced by the 6th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to allow a transgender employee to break their sex-specific dress code and wear women’s clothing at work.
Ultimately, as we reported at the time, it would be the redefinition of “sex” upon which the court’s decision would hinge.
On Monday, the high court ruled that Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which forbids discrimination on the basis of “sex,” applies to gay and transgender people.
“Today, we must decide whether an employer can fire someone simply for being homosexual or transgender,” Gorsuch wrote in the court’s opinion on the matter. “The answer is clear. An employer who fires an individual for being homosexual or transgender fires that person for traits or actions it would not have questioned in members of a different sex. Sex plays a necessary and undisguisable role in the decision, exactly what Title VII forbids.”
Gorsuch joined Chief Justice John Roberts and liberal Justices Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan, and Sonia Sotomayor in favor of the plaintiffs. Conservative justices Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas, and Brett Kavanaugh, another Trump nominee, dissented from the decision.
“They have advanced powerful policy arguments and can take pride in today’s result. Under the Constitution’s separation of powers, however, I believe that it was Congress’s role, not this Court’s, to amend Title VII. I therefore must respectfully dissent from the Court’s judgment,” Kavanaugh wrote in his dissent.
Shocked conservatives denounced Gorsuch over his vote and the court’s apparent intrusion in what should be a part of the legislative process, including Carrie Severino, president of the conservative organization Judicial Crisis Network.
“Justice Scalia would be disappointed that his successor has bungled textualism so badly today, for the sake of appealing to college campuses and editorial boards,” Severino said in a Twitter thread.
While the question of whether to amend Title VII to add more categories may be a difficult one as a matter of policy, the question of the Court’s role on this issue was an easy one: Allow the people to decide the issue through their elected representatives. (2/x)
— Carrie Severino (@JCNSeverino) June 15, 2020
“You can’t redefine the meaning of words themselves and still be doing textualism,” she concluded. “This is an ominous sign for anyone concerned about the future of representative democracy.”
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