Mat Staver is the founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, a non-profit litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of human life, and the family. Mat has argued two landmark cases before the Supreme Court, Madsen v. Women’s Health Center and McCreary County v. ACLU of Kentucky. He hosts the radio programs, Faith & Freedom and Freedom’s Call.
3 years ago today, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a decision in which a majority of justices indicated that so-called, same-sex marriages were a constitutional right. It came from a decision known as Obergefeld v. Hodges.
What impact has this had? Mat sees it as a shameful decision because Chief Justice John Roberts noted that this decision is not based upon the Constitution nor on the precedent of the court. It’s simply an imposition of the will of 5 individuals to overrule the marriage laws of a number of states and thus affect the rest of the nation.
The impact was seen in the Kim Davis case and the more recent Jack Phillips case where he won on a very specific issue dealing with the free exercise of religion. So overall, Mat sees Obergefeld as a very negative decision, but most of all it’s not based upon the Constitution, and any decision not based on that weakens the rule of law, the judicial branch, and ultimately will be relegated to the trash bin of history.
The first case on the Crosstalk docket was NIFLA (National Institute of Family and Life Advocates) v. Becerra (the attorney general of California). The case ruled that California violated the First Amendment by requiring pregnancy centers to post a notice or disclaimer about abortion services. The good news is that in a 5-4 opinion, the court decided that this violated the First Amendment.
How will this decision impact Barronelle Stutzman, the owner of Arlene’s Flower Shop, who refused to make a flower arrangement for a same-sex wedding? The Washington attorney general came after her and made denigrating comments about her religion. The Supreme Court granted the petition and sent the decision to the court below to have it reviewed in light of the Phillips decision. So if the Masterpiece Cake Shop decision was reversed due to negative religious comments, the lower court that sees this flower shop case needs to reverse this as well.
Another case discussed dealt with the Trump travel ban (Trump v. Hawaii). This 5-4 decision in favor of the president shows how Trump’s ban is unique compared to that of past presidents. There’s lots of information as to why it’s justified. Also, the other travel bans didn’t have a termination time.
So why did the media go after the President and why didn’t they mention that other presidents did this with less information and for a longer period of time? This not only shows that the Constitution and the federal law are on the side of President Trump, it shows that the media and lower courts are guilty of buying into anti-Trump rhetoric.
Jim also has Mat comment on the ‘Muslim ban’ accusation related to the travel ban, gerrymandering/redistricting involving Wisconsin and Texas, forced unions, water rights in Florida and Georgia, and more.