Senator Hawley Blasts Bogren
The following is an excerpt of Senator Hawley's op-ed expressing his opposition to judicial nominee Michael Bogren. His full statement is here.
Michael Bogren is a nominee for a judicial seat in Michigan. He is currently defending the city of East Lansing, Mich., in a lawsuit brought by Steve and Bridget Tennes. The Tenneses are a faithful Catholic family who operate Country Mill Orchard and Cider Mill. After they stated publicly that they believe in the Bible’s teachings on marriage and adhere to those beliefs for their business, the city barred them from participating in the local farmers market. They were then forced to sue the city to defend their rights.
Mr. Bogren responded with a scorched-earth strategy in his litigation against the Tennes family. He wrote, “Plaintiffs attempt to dress their arguments up in a shimmering gown of First Amendment and religious righteousness and parade it down the runway of moral superiority. When stripped of its costume, however, what lurks beneath is simply this: discriminatory conduct.”
He compared their Christian beliefs about marriage to the racism of the Ku Klux Klan, arguing that following the teachings of their faith by not celebrating same-sex weddings on their farm was “no different than the ‘White Applicants Only’ sign.” He also attacked the sincerity and the consistency of their beliefs, arguing that they only “selectively” apply their faith to their lives.