Clarence Thomas Justice Sonia Sotomayor Lorie Smith New York state Colorado Law U.S. Supreme Court Clarence Thomas Justice Sonia Sotomayor Lorie Smith New York state Colorado

Supreme Court Appears to Lean Toward Ruling for Antigay Web Designer

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The U.S. Supreme Court appeared sympathetic to a web designer who wants to turn away same-sex couples when it heard oral arguments in her case Monday.Lorie Smith, owner of 303 Creative in Colorado, wants to expand her wedding website business but says her conservative Christian beliefs won’t allow her to celebrate same-sex couples — and that designing websites for them would be a celebration and would interfere with her rights to freedom of religion and speech.

She seeks to include a statement on her website that she will not serve same-sex couples.She filed suit in 2016 challenging Colorado’s LGBTQ-inclusive nondiscrimination law.

She lost at the federal district court and appeals court levels. The Supreme Court agreed in February to hear her case but only on the free speech claim.In oral arguments in the case, 303 Creative LLC v.

Elenis, Kristen Waggoner, the Alliance Defending Freedom attorney representing Smith, said her client “believes opposite-sex marriage honors Scripture and same-sex marriage contradicts it.”Justice Clarence Thomas, an outspoken opponent of LGBTQ+ rights, asked if the case was “ripe,” as Smith has not yet gone into the wedding business and therefore has not turned away same-sex couple away.

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