Religion News Service profiled the three frontrunners for nomination to the Supreme Court: Amy Conet Barrett, Brett Kavanaugh, and Raymond Kethledge. All are devout Christians and have conservative records on the bench. Religious freedom is expected to figure prominently in the selection and confirmation processes.
The US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed suit against oil company Halliburton for harassment of two Muslim employees.
A judge in Indiana dismissed a three-year lawsuit brought by The First Church of Cannabis that contended its religious liberty had been curtailed by not being permitted to use marijuana in its services.
The governor of Maine cited religious liberty when he vetoed legislation banning conversion therapy.
Deseret News analysis of state bills affecting religious freedom showed that fewer than 14% had bipartisan sponsorship.
The Supreme Court upheld the Trump administration ban on travelers from 7 countries, 5 with majority-Muslim populations. The majority opinion focused on the President’s power to make administrative decisions for national security, while the dissent argued that it was inconsistent with the court’s recent ruling in the Cakeshop Masterpiece case, because it treated statements with religious bias differently.
The Atlantic assessed how both sides of the travel ban case used families in their arguments. The Washington Post asked why religious liberty groups didn’t criticize the decision.
A New York Times analysis makes the case that recent Supreme Court decisions reflect a successful shift in conservative argumentation. It says that conservatives stopped appealing to common morality and maintaining order and are now taking the same approach liberals have in appealing to rights. The author opines that these new tactics may backfire.
Supreme Court swing voter Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement. Trump is expected to nominate a conservative appointee who will appeal to a religious, conservative voting base – particularly evangelicals. Two religious power brokers in DC are likely to significantly affect who is nominated.
Over 600 members of the United Methodist Church lodged a formal complaint against Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who is a member, arguing that the policies of separating immigrant children from their parents violates basic tenets of the church’s rules. The complaint could theoretically lead to his excommunication, but experts say that’s unlikely.
The New York City Commission on Human Rights released data on religious discrimination. They reported, among other statistics, that 25% of New Yorkers who wear religious garb have experienced multiple occasions of verbal harassment or taunting.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sued a New Mexico diner that refused to allow a Muslim employee to wear a headscarf. The employee was later fired, and is suing for back wages.