Matthew J. Kacsmaryk, a nominee who has repeatedly written about his opposition to LGBTQ rights, was approved by the Republican Senate to a lifetime seat on the federal bench during Pride month by a vote of 52-46. Democrats were joined by Senator Susan Collins in opposing the nominee.
Kacsmaryk does not believe that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act includes sexual orientation and gender identity, he opposed the Obergefell ruling and believes that the Equality Act “weaponizes” it, he defended the actions of Kentucky County Clerk Kim Davis when she refused to issue marriage licenses to gay couples, and he has called transgender people “delusional.”
The Washington Blade adds: ‘LGBT rights supporters have also criticized Kacsmaryk for signing onto a comment when the rule was proposed saying transgender people suffer from a “psychological condition in need of care” and are “not a category of persons in need of special legal protection.” The comment cites the opinion of a psychiatrist who has said having a transgender identity are suffering from a “delusion,” which critics have attributed to Kacsmaryk himself.’
Kacsmaryk served as deputy general counsel of the Texas-based First Liberty Institute, responsible for the lawsuit brought by Aaron and Melissa Klein of the bakery “Sweet Cakes by Melissa” which was recently pushed back to lower courts by SCOTUS, which told courts to revisit the case with regard to the Masterpiece Cakeshop ruling won by anti-gay baker Jack Phillips.
Kacsmaryk also sees “religious liberty and sexual liberty” as a “clash of absolutes,” according to his writings.
Sens. Dick Durbin and Patty Murray spoke in opposition to Kacsmaryk.
Said Murray: “Mr. Kacsmaryk is another example of an extreme choice by President Trump to jam courts with individuals who will put their political views above the law and use their positions of power to chip away at people’s rights.”