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‘Fake’ same-sex marriage lawsuit amid Supreme Court’s latest threat to LGBT+ rights

christian website designer colorado She didn’t want to serve same-sex couples, which could run afoul of state laws that prohibit public companies from discriminating against same-sex couples. LGBT+ people.

The designer had no same-sex clients. She didn’t take requests for wedding websites from gay couples. However, in her legal challenge, she had the support of an influential right-wing legal group that supported the closure of the case. Law vs. Wadeshe argued that Colorado law violated First Amendment rights.

On the final day of the term, the United States supreme courtConservative More than half agreedcould jeopardize the already fragile rights of LGBT+ Americans and the ability of state governments to protect them.

However, the key evidence in this case appears to have been fabricated.

The man named in the case, whose phone number and email address were attached to court filings, claims he had nothing to do with the case.

In 2016, Laurie Smith claimed in a filing that a man named “Stewart” contacted her website to help with a wedding to someone named “Mike.” , place names, etc. It may even extend to websites. ”

new republic I found “Stewart”. He is heterosexual and married to a woman, but said he had never been in contact with Smith.

His alleged service request was filed within 24 hours of Smith’s initial lawsuit in state court.

“If someone pulls out my information as any corroborating information or document, someone has falsified it,” he explained. New Republic. “I’m married and have kids and I’m not really sure where that came from. But someone is using false information in their Supreme Court filings.”

Even after the Supreme Court ruling, it remains unclear how and why he was a statement to Independent, Smith’s attorney dismissed his response, arguing that the service request was genuine. A spokeswoman for the Colorado Attorney General pointed to previous allegations that there was no evidence to show that.

Meanwhile, statements claiming that “Stewart” never did, and claims by lawyers using his name and alleged statements, remain printed in several court documents.

Demonstrators who supported Lawrie Smith’s lawsuit celebrate Supreme Court ruling in Washington DC on June 30

(Associated Press)

In a motion filed in 2016 by a Colorado attorney to dismiss the lawsuit, Smith said she had not received a request for services and was ineligible to sue. A response from the Alliance to Defend Liberty, a conservative Christian group representing Smith, argued that she did not have to undergo such an investigation before challenging the state law.

Months later, in February 2017, Smith was under investigation, weeks before Colorado attorneys sought to dismiss the lawsuit in order to strengthen their challenge to state law, lawyers for the group said.

“Specifically, the allegation that Laurie never receives requests to create custom websites celebrating same-sex ceremonies is no longer valid because Laurie has received such requests,” the filing said.

Later that year, following a court ruling in favor of Colorado, the group mentioned “Stewart” and “Mike” in an article. press release.

In a filing filed with the Supreme Court in December 2021, Colorado’s attorneys again responded to the request for motion, saying the investigation was “not a request to the website at all, but an ‘invitation’ and an ‘invitation’. It’s just a response to an online form asking.” “place name”, with a statement that the person “could also extend to the website”. ”

The Alliance to Defend Liberty hit back in a reply gist, again referring to a claim that may not even exist: “Colorado Claims – Claims from ‘Mike’ and ‘Stewart’ for Wedding Websites Claim Same-Sex Marriage” Doesn’t reflect ‘-flash reality. ”


Independent We asked Liberty League representatives how “Stewart” came to be involved in the case.

Senior Advisor Kelly Fiedrek said: new republic‘s findings were a ‘last-minute attempt to smear Raleigh’ [that] Her civil rights lawsuit and her desperate desire to outlaw our justice system ooze out. ”

“It is incontrovertible that Laurie received this request through the website. She does not perform background checks on requests received to determine if the person sending the request is genuine,” she said. added. “It doesn’t matter if Laurie got a legitimate request or someone lied to her. She doesn’t have to wait for government punishment to challenge an unjust law.”

A spokeswoman for the Colorado Attorney General’s Office had no comment before the verdict but noted: Independent The brief to the Supreme Court said Mr. Smith had not taken “any action to ensure that the form was submitted by a genuine prospective customer.”

The Supreme Court’s ruling is a blow to LGBT+ advocates who fear the case could open the door to setbacks in discrimination protections, and Justice Sonia Sotomayor said the ruling was issued amidst an issue. pointed out that it was A wave of state laws targeting LGBT+ people.

“This incident cannot be understood apart from the context in which it happened,” she wrote in her dissenting opinion. “Given such circumstances, the consequences are all the more dire. …At this pivotal moment, the Court has the opportunity to reaffirm its commitment to equality on behalf of all members of society, including LGBT people. I got it.

Kelly Robinson, president of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBT+ civil rights group, said in a statement that the court’s decision was “a dangerous setback that has forced some companies to turn people away just because of who we are.” It gives them the power to discriminate against

Noting that the decision was made on the last day of Pride Month, President Joe Biden said he was “deeply concerned that the decision could lead to further discrimination” against LGBT+ Americans. rice field.

“More broadly, today’s decision undermines long-standing laws that protect all Americans, including people of color, people with disabilities, people of faith and women, from discrimination in public places,” she said. added. ‘Fake’ same-sex marriage lawsuit amid Supreme Court’s latest threat to LGBT+ rights

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