Amy Coney Barrett is an Absolute Threat to LGBTQ Rights

by HRC Staff

Post submitted by Lucas Acosta (he/him), former Deputy Director of Communications, Politics

Early reports are suggesting that Seventh Circuit U.S. Appeals Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett is the odds on favorite to be nominated by President Donald Trump to fill the seat of late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, a champion for LGBTQ equality. Amy Coney Barrett’s history tells a story of anti-LGBTQ ideology, opposing basic rights thought to be settled law, and an anti-choice ideology out of step with popular opinion.

Coney Barrett defended the Supreme Court’s dissenters on the landmark marriage equality case of Obergefell v. Hodges, questioning the role of the court in deciding the case:

[Chief Justice Roberts, in his dissent,] said, those who want same-sex marriage, you have every right to lobby in state legislatures to make that happen, but the dissent’s view was that it wasn’t for the court to decide...So I think Obergefell, and what we’re talking about for the future of the court, it’s really a who decides question.” - Coney Barrett

Coney Barrett says Title IX protections do not extend to transgender Americans, claiming it’s a “strain on the text” to reach that interpretation:

"When Title IX was enacted, it’s pretty clear that no one, including the Congress that enacted that statute, would have dreamed of that result, at that time. Maybe things have changed so that we should change Title IX, maybe those arguing in favor of this kind of transgender bathroom access are right. That’s a public policy debate to have. But it does seem to strain the text of the statute to say that Title IX demands it.” - Coney Barrett

Coney Barrett misgendered transgender people, referring to a transgender women as “physiological males,” while casting doubt on transgender rights:

“People will feel passionately on either side about whether physiological males who identify as females should be permitted in bathrooms, especially where there are young girls present.” - Coney Barrett

Coney Barrett refused to rehear a racial segregation case, raising concerns about her approach to Civil Rights issues:

According to the AFJ: “In 2017, Coney Barrett refused to rehear a case that was decided against a Black Autozone employee who faced racial segregation when he was laterally transferred from one Autozone location to another based on Autozone’s Chicago policy of ‘segregating employees and intentionally assigning members of different races to different stores.’ This raises serious concerns about Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s position and willingness to rule on Civil Rights issues as a potential Supreme Court Justice.”

Coney Barrett has consistently demonstrated opposition to reproductive rights:

  • She called Roe an “erroneous decision” and a “dramatic shift.”
  • She predicted the Supreme Court would give states more flexibility to limit abortions, saying “I think the question is ‘how much freedom the court is willing to let States have in regulating abortion?’ I think the question of, you know, the court has held that in some circumstances states can render partial-birth abortion illegal, very late-term abortions. I think that's the kind of thing that would change.”
  • She dissented to a denial of an enbanc hearing in Planned Parenthood of Indiana, case in which a three judge panel of the 7th Circuit voted against regulating the disposal of fetal remains after an abortion or miscarriage, holding that the eugenics statute was unconstitutional because fetal remains are not remains of “persons” within the scope of the Due Process Clause, making it irrational to require them to be treated as if they were.