Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights Groups Announce Opposition to Nomination of Samuel Ali

by HRC Staff

Nominee Would Roll Back Civil Rights Protections for LGBT Community

WASHINGTON- The Human Rights Campaign National Gay and Lesbian Task Force National Center for Lesbian Rights and Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays today announced their opposition to the nomination of Samuel A. Alito to the Supreme Court of the United States.

The Supreme Court has the constitutional duty to protect the equality and liberty of all Americans and the respective authorities of the co-equal branches to act for the health, safety and welfare of all. A nominee to the court bears the burden of demonstrating that he or she is committed to rigorously enforcing the principles of equal protection and due process. Mere assurances before or during a hearing are not enough- the professional and judicial record of Judge Samuel Alito makes clear that he cannot meet that burden. It also makes clear that the individual and equal protection rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgenderpeople and their families would be in real jeopardy if he were confirmed.

"In striking down an anti-harassment law and arguing for a narrow interpretation of our Constitution's guarantee of liberty, Judge Alito has proven himself to be the wrong choice to replace moderate Justice Sandra Day O'Connor," said HRC President Joe Solmonese. "We also share our allies' concerns about his record on reproductive choice and the separation of church and state," Solmonese added.

"Judge Alito's appointment would spell disaster for LGBT Americans for decades to come. His judicial record fully reflects his embrace in the 1980s of the right-wing agenda and is completely antithetical to the constitutional principles and values on which our rights and equal protection guarantees rest, " said National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Executive Director Matt Foreman. "His record shows open and declared hostility to reproductive rights to the power of Congress to protect all Americans to the values of diversity to established, fair and effective rules in enforcing non-discrimination protections and to appropriate constraints on official and public space religious expression. We urge the Senate to reject his nomination."

"The U.S. Supreme Court is the final authority on a whole host of issues that have a direct impact on the lives of every citizen," noted Kate Kendell, executive director, National Center for Lesbian Rights. "With regard to procreative freedom in particular, he has worked actively to undermine Roe v. Wade and to roll back the clock on one of the most basic cornerstones of women's equality and freedom."

"Alito's record indicates that he would not protect all families equally," said Jody Huckaby, executive director of Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays. "As parents, family members and friends, we know that there is too much at stake now to leave GLBT rights in the hands of Alito."

The Human Rights Campaign is the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender political organization with members throughout the country. It effectively lobbies Congress, provides campaign support and educates the public to ensure that LGBT Americans can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.See full statement.

Founded in 1973, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Foundation (the Task Force) is the first national lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights and advocacy organization and the movement's leading voice for freedom, justice and equality. We work to build the grassroots political power of our community by training state and local activists and leaders, strengthening the infrastructure of state and local allies and organizing broad-based campaigns to build public support for complete equality for LGBT people.See full statement.

The National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) is a non-profit legal organization committed to advancing the rights and safety of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and their families through litigation, public policy advocacy and public education. Founded in 1977, NCLR is based in California and has offices in Florida and Washington, D.C.See full statement.

Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) is the nation's foremost family-based organization committed to the civil rights of gays, lesbians, bisexual and transgender persons. Founded in 1973 by mothers and fathers, PFLAG has 200,000 members and supporters in more than 500 chapters throughout the United States.See full statement.

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