New SCOTUS nominee, Kavanaugh, will make religious liberty great again

New SCOTUS nominee, Kavanaugh, will make religious liberty great again
© Anna Moneymaker

President Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpGrassley: Dems 'withheld information' on new Kavanaugh allegation Health advocates decry funding transfer over migrant children Groups plan mass walkout in support of Kavanaugh accuser MORE announced his nominee for Supreme Court, and now the eyes of the nation are upon Brett Kavanaugh.

Among those are the defenders of religious liberty who have become all too accustomed to being flogged at the steps of the highest court in the land in recent years by Obama-era appointees who appeared to have a political axe to grind.

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Now, a new day is dawning as America is poised to welcome a Supreme Court justice that honors religious liberty and the First Amendment just as our forefathers intended.

 

As a Supreme Court justice, Kavanaugh I am confident will defend Americans’ right to practice their faith without government interference.

As the spokeswoman for the landmark Prop. 8 campaign over marriage and religious liberty — one of the few political campaigns in America to go all the way to the Supreme Court — this pick appeals to me greatly. 

A look at the cases he’s presided over give us some hints as to how he’d rule at the nation's’ highest court.

In more than one instance, Kavanaugh has refused to banish religion from the public square.

In Newdow v. Roberts, Judge Kavanaugh upheld the opening prayer and invocation of God at official government ceremonies. He not only supported religious freedom, he actually suggested that “stripping government ceremonies of any references to God or religious expression . . . would, in effect, ‘establish’ atheism.”

At an oral argument in Archdiocese of Washington v. WMATA, Judge Kavanaugh called the D.C. Metro’s ban on religious advertising, including Christmas ads, “pure discrimination” and “odious” to the First Amendment. The Washington Post called his questioning “unrelenting.” Although the case remains pending, it gives us signals about where Kavanaugh comes down on the so-called “war on Christmas.”

Any conservatives who are concerned about Kavanaugh should take heart. The future potential justice doesn’t just talk the talk, he walks the walk.

Kavanaugh gives his time in his personal life to advance the cause of religious liberty.

For example while in private practice, Judge Kavanaugh served as Chairman of the Federalist Society’s Religious Liberty Practice Group.

In private practice, Judge Kavanaugh authored pro bono amicus briefs on behalf of religious groups who had cases at the Supreme Court. 

In Santa Fe Independent School District v. Doe, Judge Kavanaugh argued that a public-school policy permitting student-led, student-initiated prayer at high school football games did not violate the Establishment Clause. 

In Good News Club v. Milford Central School, Kavanaugh argued that a public school that allows after-school use of its facilities by clubs must allow similar use by religious clubs.

He has also voted to uphold conscience rights. 

In Priests for Life v. HHS, Judge Kavanaugh voted to block the Obama administration from forcing religious entities to violate their consciences and be complicit in providing contraceptive and abortion coverage to their employees.

The case was brought on behalf of the Priests for Life; Alveda King, the niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; and others. In his ruling, Kavanaugh argued that it is “crystal clear” that “when the Government forces someone to take an action contrary to his or her sincere religious belief...the Government has substantially burdened the individual’s exercise of religion.”

One can presume that Judge Kavanaugh’s commitment to religious liberty comes from his deep-rooted Catholic faith. A product of Catholic schools, he is a reader at his local Catholic parish and coaches Catholic Youth Organization basketball.

He also serves meals as part of Catholic Charities’ St. Maria’s meals program, tutors at local elementary schools, and is on the board of the Washington Jesuit Academy.

The bottom line is that Judge Kavanaugh is a decent, pro-family, pro-liberty pick for the Supreme Court.

With obstructionist Democrats vowing to block his nomination, his confirmation far from guaranteed but one thing is clear — every cake baker, pizza maker and wedding photographer can begin to breathe a sigh of relief because under Kavanaugh’s reign, religious liberty would be safe once again.

Jen Kerns has served as a GOP strategist and writer for the U.S. presidential debates for FOX News. She previously served as communications director and spokeswoman for the California Republican Party, the Colorado recalls over gun control, and the Prop. 8 battle over marriage which went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.