Log Cabin Endorses McConnell for 10th Circuit Court

September 17, 2002 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Blogger Tumblr

(WASHINGTON, DC) – The nations largest gay Republican organization endorsed Professor Michael McConnell to become a Federal Judge of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals of today. McConnell is a very well respected civil libertarian with a long record of making principled decisions on controversial cases.

"He's a true civil libertarian who adheres to principle regardless of politics. We need more judges, not less, like him in America," stated Rich Tafel, Executive Director of Log Cabin Republicans after meeting McConnell.

McConnell has weighed in on only a few issues that have impacted the gay and lesbian community. In the most high-profile case, McConnell argued before the Supreme Court in the Dale vs. Boy Scouts case that issue was not sexual orientation, but freedom of association.

"I think all of us in the gay community realized that was a tough case. The Boy Scouts are wrong in banning gay leaders from their ranks. However, freedom of association is a cherished right within the gay community. We also don't want to be told who we must accept as leaders within our own organizations. The real test of McConnell's principles on that case was would he come out in favor of gay organizations to be free to choose our own leaders and he has."

"When gay groups have been unfairly discriminated against by the Salt Lake School district, Professor McConnell defender their right to meet in public schools. In 1995, Professor McConnell sided with the East High School's Gay/Straight Alliance when it sought to meet at the Salt Lake City School. In response, the Salt Lake City School district eliminated all non-curricular clubs. Professor McConnell argued against that decision by the school district. Eventually the Gay/Straight Alliance was allowed to meet due in part to the 1984 Equal Access Act. Professor McConnell strongly supports that act."

"When the government oversteps its bounds and infringes against the gay community, Prof. McConnell has spoken out against that as well, for example, he opposes state sanctioned sodomy laws" Tafel continued.

"Professor McConnell decides cases on principle not politics, upsetting Republicans when he spoke out against the impeachment of Bill Clinton on the grounds that the voters rights supercede a partisan votes. In addition, in the 2000 election McConnell argued that the Supreme Court should have allowed Florida time for another vote."

"The fact that Professor McConnell has support from a wide variety of well-known liberal legal scholars is another testament to him as a brilliant and principled scholar," noted Tafel. "If these judicial nominations remain paralyzed by political partisanship, our judicial system will continue to be overburdened."