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Conservative Group Drops Endorsement Of 'Pro Gay'


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Conservative Group Drops Endorsement Of 'Pro Gay' Judge Roberts

by Doreen Brandt 365Gay.com Washington Bureau

Posted: August 9, 2005 7:00 pm ET

(Washington) A conservative lobby group announced Tuesday that it is withdrawing its support from Judge John G. Roberts Jr.- President Bush's nominee to the US Supreme Court.

Public Advocate, a Virginia-based "national pro-family group", said in a statement that the more comes "as a result of Roberts' support for the radical homosexual lobby in the 1996 Supreme Court case Romer v. Evans."

Last week it was reported that Roberts had worked behind the scenes for a coalition of gay-rights groups, helping them prepare their arguments to present to the court. (story)

The groups were attempting to have the court strike down a voter-approved 1992 Colorado initiative allowing employers and landlords to exclude gays from jobs and housing.

The coalition won the case in a 6-3 decision.

At the time gay rights leaders activists described it as the movement's most important legal victory.

Public Advocate President Eugene Delgaudio will hold a news conference Wednesday on the steps of the Supreme Court to call for careful scrutiny of Roberts.

In the hours before President Bush publicly announced Roberts' nomination the President called leading fundamentalist Christians assuring them of Roberts conservative background. Indeed he was once a member of a right wing legal group in Washington - an organization that Roberts says he does not remember ever belonging to.

Roberts involvement in Romer v. Evans came while he was working at the prestigious Hogan & Hartson law firm and was part of its pro bono caseload.

Roberts was not paid for his work and he did not argue the case.

Following reports outlining the work he had done on the case several of the conservative groups that had been supportive of Roberts nomination expressed reservations, but Public Advocate is the first of the groups to officially pull its support.

Mathew Staver, president of Liberty Counsel, a conservative legal group fighting LGBT rights in several states, said Roberts' involvement in the gay case is "something to certainly be concerned about." Focus on the Family also is "raising alarm bells." (story)

In 2003 Public Advocate was instrumental in getting the Attorney General John Ashcroft to bar gay employees from holding their annual Pride event at DOJ headquarters. (story)

The group a year later, after same-sex marriage became legal in Massachusetts, in a letter to Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Mark W. Everson asked the IRS to investigate same-sex couples who submit any tax form filed as "married - filing jointly". The IRS later issued a statement that submitting joint returns was illegal under the Federal Marriage Act. (story)

Delgaudio attacked Vice President Dick Cheney last year after the vice president, when asked about gay marriage, said, "Freedom means freedom for everyone."

Delgaudio said then: "'Freedom' is not embracing perversion."

©365Gay.com 2005


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