The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments today in the case of a gay couple turned away by a Lakewood bakery. Baker Jack Phillips refused in 2012 to create a wedding cake for David Mullins and Charlie Craig, saying it was against his Christian beliefs. A legal battle began with a Colorado court found the baker's actions were unlawful discrimination. The baker says this violates his rights to religious freedom and free speech. Colorado bans businesses from discriminating against customers based on race and sexual orientation. A verdict in favor of Phillips could mean a number of businesses may refuse certain services to gay couples by invoking religious beliefs. A ruling is expected June.
Statement from Attorney General Cynthia H. Coffman on Today’s U.S. Supreme Court Argument in Masterpiece Cake Shop Limited v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission
Statement from Attorney General Coffman:
“After a long and careful debate, Colorado’s legislature in 2008 decided to extend the LGBT community the very same legal protections we use to fight all forms of discrimination, whether based on race, sex, or a person’s faith. One critical part of those protections is the idea that when people walk into a retail store that is open to the public, they are not turned away because of who they are. Our State and our Constitution has deep respect for the right of all people to follow their faith and speak their minds. But it would be a mistake in deciding this case to create new exceptions to anti-discrimination laws that have never been applied to any other group of people. My office presented the Court with our strongest arguments today, based on many years of established legal precedent, and I look forward to receiving its ruling.”