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27 LGBTQ Groups Cosign Letter Opposing Trump's Judicial Choices

Pablo Martinez Monsivais

Lambda Legal is heading the opposition against two of Trump’s Anti-LGBTQ judicial choices. In a letter cosigned by 26 other liberal organizations, the legal nonprofit urged the Senate not to confirm nominees John K. Bush and Damien Schiff to the bench.

Both men have been vocal opponents of LGBTQ rights. John K. Bush, a Kentucky lawyer being considered for the Sixth Court of Appeals, has spoken out against the Kentucky Supreme Court’s decision to remove consensual sodomy from its list of prosecutable offences. He has also received public backlash for giving a speech that contained a quote from someone who used the word “faggot."

Damien Schiff, a California attorney up for a seat on the United States Court of Federal Claims, hasn’t been shy about his anti-LGBTQ views. Schiff has criticized Title IX, the law that ensures LGBTQ students have access to the same opportunities as their heterosexual peers.

In 2009, Schiff posted an entry on his personal blog, entitled “Teaching Gayness.” that chastised a California school district’s anti-bullying program because he believed it taught that the “bullying of homosexuals is wrong, but also that the homosexual lifestyle is... good, and that homosexual families are the moral equivalent of traditional heterosexual families.”  

In the letter co-signed by the Human Rights Campaign, National Centre for Transgender Equality, Freedom for All Americans and PFLAG, among others, Lambda Legal argues that “the records of Mr. Bush and Mr. Schiff demonstrate that their appointment to the bench would cause grave harm to the LGBT community, as well as many other communities who rely on the federal judiciary to administer fair and impartial justice.” 

This letter comes one day before Bush’s Senate confirmation hearing. Since the Senate is controlled by the Republicans, he is likely to be confirmed to the bench.  To block his nominations, every Democratic senator and, at least, three Republicans would have to vote against their appointments.

A date has yet to be set for Schiff’s confirmation.

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