Texas Conservative Group Backing Colorado Baker in Key SCOTUS Case

A Texas faith-based group is one of about three dozen nationwide that are supporting a Colorado cake baker, whose religious freedom case today goes before the United States Supreme Court, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

"You have the government actively engaged in trying to tell private businesses what to do on their own property and then punishing them if they do not," Jonathan Saenz, president of Texas Values, tells Newsradio 1200 WOAI.

Today's oral arguments on Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, is seen as a blockbuster case that will test the limits of the First Amendment.  

Back in 2012, Jack Phillips turned down a gay couple, who wanted a custom wedding cake. The reason?  He said he didn’t want to promote a same-sex wedding due to his religious beliefs.

The couple, Charlie Craig and David Mullins, filed a complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Commission. That commission decided against Phillips, declaring he had discriminated on the basis of sexual orientation.

Saenz says the Constitution protects freedom of speech.

"And, by no means, does it give government the power to compel artists to express the government’s message, particularly on an issue such as marriage."

The case has slowly been making its way to the Supreme Court.  The Colorado Court of Appeals upheld the decision and the Colorado Supreme Court declined to hear the case.

Last year, Phillips petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court, claiming the Colorado ruling violates the Free Speech and Free Exercise Clauses of the First Amendment.  For weeks, the justices held off on taking the case, after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.

All eyes are on the newest justice, President Trump’s pick Neil Gorsuch, for signs of how he’ll vote.

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