The Trump administration has petitioned the Supreme Court to allow it to argue an anti-gay Colorado baker was within his rights to reject a gay couple’s request for a wedding cake.
In 2012, Jack Phillips, owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, was found guilty of violating Colorado’s anti-discrimination law when he turned Charlie Craig and David Mullins away. But Phillips argued his right to free speech—via his cakes was being infringed—and appealed the case all the way to the high court, which will hear opening arguments on December 5.
The ACLU, which is representing the plaintiffs, says Phillips had no problem with the cake the couple requested—he just didn’t want to sell it to them in particular. “This case involves the straightforward application of a standard public accommodation law.”
Back in September, the Justice Department filed an amicus brief supporting Philips, whose case is being handled by the notoriously anti-LGBT Alliance Defending Freedom. But that wasn’t enough for the White House, which now wants Solicitor General Noel Francisco to have time to make a case for bigotry. “The United States has a substantial interest in the preservation of federal constitutional rights of free expression,” Francisco wrote in a motion.
According to The Washington Times the Supreme Court is expected to grant the Trump administration’s request—in which case, Francisco will get ten minutes before the court. It will not be deducted from the twenty minutes allotted to Phillips’ attorneys at Alliance Defending Freedom.
In June, a Washington State florist who refused to provide flowers for a same-sex ceremony asked the Supreme Court to hear an appeal claiming she violated state anti-discrimination laws because of her deeply felt religious beliefs.