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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Leigh Finke (DFL)

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House and Senate Queer Caucus Statement on U.S. Supreme Court ruling on 303 Creative v. Elenis

Friday, June 30, 2023

SAINT PAUL, Minn. –  Today the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 303 Creative v. Elenis, delivering a major setback for LGBTQIA2S+ rights in America. The ruling allows businesses to discriminate against LGBTQIA2S+ people on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity, simply by claiming that doing so is protected by their First Amendment right to free speech. 

The Minnesota House and Senate Queer Caucus released the following statement: 

“We are appalled by the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling today. The court's ruling in 303 Creative v. Elenis is a major setback for LGBTQIA2S+ rights in America and is the first time in Supreme Court History that the court has granted a business a constitutional right to refuse service to members of a protected class. 

“Just five years ago, the Supreme Court said unequivocally that objections to marriage equality “do not allow business owners and other actors in the economy and in society to deny protected persons equal access to goods and services under a neutral and generally applicable public accommodations law.” But in five years, anti-LGBTQIA2S+ hate groups and allied Republicans were able to steal two Supreme Court seats and wage a relentless quest to erode our civil rights. 

“At a time when attacks against LGTBQIA2S+ are increasing, the Court chose to side with hate groups and reduce our community to second-class citizenship. The purpose of this lawsuit was to create a constitutional right to shame and stigmatize LGBTQIA2S+ in places of public accommodations. This ruling is the latest tidal wave in an orchestrated backlash, designed to erase our community. Make no mistake, the consequences of this decision are vast, opening the door to exclude anyone under the guise of free speech -- whether they be LGBTQIA2S+, religious minorities, people of color, women, those with disabilities, and more.   

“While this is a serious setback for our nation, Minnesota’s non-discrimination laws remain. We, as the Minnesota House and Senate Queer Caucus, remain steadfast in our commitment to defending and protecting the civil and human rights of all Minnesotans, including and especially our beautiful and expansive community, to ensure our state is equitable and inclusive.”