Post submitted by Lucas Acosta (he/him), former Deputy Director of Communications, Politics
Reports suggest that thirty-eight year old Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Allison Jones Rushing may be a front-runner to be nominated by President Donald Trump to fill the seat of late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a champion for LGBTQ equality. Allison Jones Rushing’s long, close affiliation with the Alliance Defending Freedom, a group designated an anti-LGBTQ hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, proves she will be anything but impartial when judging cases with LGBTQ parties or about LGBTQ rights.
Jones Rushing justified the Defense Against Marriage Act, which defined marriage as between a man and a woman for federal purposes and allowed states to refuse to recognize same-sex marriages from other states:
In a 2013 speech at a forum titled ‘Enemies of Mankind’: Religion and Morality in the Supreme Court’s Same-Sex Marriage Jurisprudence, Jones Rushing outlined her support for the Defense of Marriage Act and her opposition to the Windsor decision in which the Supreme Court struck down the discriminatory law. Jones Rushing said in the speech: “The reasons for the law were both moral and practical,” continuing on to say “the fact that DOMA codified the definition of marriage that had prevailed throughout most of human history...was evidence that the law did have a valid basis” and that the majority opinion in Windsor was written “in a unique way that calls it bigotry to believe that homosexuality does not comport with Judeo-Christian morality.”
Jones Rushing worked at the Alliance Defending Freedom and returned to the organization multiple times as a panelist and speaker:
Jones Rushing worked as a Legal Intern for The Alliance Defending Freedom while attending law school at Duke University.
The Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) has been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center due to their support for “the re-criminalization of homosexuality in the United States and criminalization abroad” and for “linking homosexuality to pedophilia.”
ADF has actively fought against equality for LGBTQ people in federal courts including in Harris Funeral Homes v. EEOC (consolidated with Bostock v. Clayton County) and Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission.
ADF has advocated for the sterilization of trans people:
In 2015, ADF International filed an intervention in the European Court of Human Rights arguing for medical treatment of transgender citizens seeking documentation, including sterilization. In the brief, ADF International said “equal dignity does not mean that every sexual orientation warrants equal respect.”
ADF believes in the re-criminalization of homosexuality in the U.S. and across the globe:
In a 2003 amicus brief in landmark LGBTQ equality case Lawrence v. Texas, ADF stated: “Defining the criminality of certain forms of sexual conduct...is a policy issue that has historically and properly been left to the state legislatures.”
Over the last decade, ADF has praised court decisions criminalizing sodomy and supporting criminalization efforts in India, Jamaica and Belize. In Belize and India, same-sex activity was worth a 10-year stint in jail.
Jones Rushing clerked for some of the most far-right Judges and Justices in American history:
Jones Rushing clerked for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, who was a dissenting vote on every major case to come before the Supreme Court on LGBTQ rights including the Lawrence, Obergefell and Bostock decisions.
She clerked for U.S. Appeals Court Judge David Santelle, who refused to resign from private clubs that did not admit black people and women.