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U.S. Supreme Court Asked Again to Reverse State Decision Targeting Oregon Bakers for Religious Beliefs

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September 7, 2022

News Release
For Immediate Release: 9.7.22
Contact: Peyton Luke, media@firstliberty.org
Direct: 972-941-4453

U.S. Supreme Court Asked Again to Reverse State Decision Targeting Oregon Bakers for Religious Beliefs
Attorneys file appeal seeking review of Oregon’s decision to compel the speech of Aaron and Melissa Klein, forcing them out of business.

Washington, D.C.—Attorneys for First Liberty Institute and Boyden Gray & Associates have once again asked the Supreme Court of the United States to review a decision by the Oregon Court of Appeals allowing the state’s Bureau of Labor and Industries (“BOLI”) to penalize Aaron and Melissa Klein because they could not in good conscience employ their artistic talents to express a message celebrating a same-sex wedding.

A copy of the petition can be found here.

“All Americans are entitled to due process, with a fair hearing before an unbiased tribunal. The Kleins never received that,” said Stephanie Taub, Senior Counsel for First Liberty Institute. “We hope the Court will hear the Kleins’ case and clarify that all Americans have a constitutional right to due process, free speech, and religious liberty. After nearly a decade, it’s past time for the Supreme Court to put an end to the state of Oregon’s hostility toward Aaron and Melissa.”

Ambassador C. Boyden Gray said, “The First Amendment protects the right of all Americans to speak freely and live according to their sincere religious beliefs without interference from the government. Carefully guarding this right is all the more important when the beliefs expressed are controversial.”

BOLI originally imposed a devastating $135,000 damage award against the Kleins for violating Oregon’s public accommodations statute after they declined to design and create a wedding cake celebrating a same-sex marriage. Following a series of appeals, the United States Supreme Court in 2019 returned the case to Oregon for further consideration in light of Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, which held that government officials cannot be hostile to the free exercise of the religious beliefs of its citizens.

The Oregon Court of Appeals determined that BOLI had demonstrated anti-religious hostility toward the Kleins and struck down the assessment of damages. However, the court then sent the case back to the same biased commission, BOLI, for further proceedings.  In July 2022, BOLI unilaterally reimposed a damage award of $30,000.

To learn more about the case, visit KleinFacts.com.

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About First Liberty Institute

First Liberty Institute is a non-profit public interest law firm and the largest legal organization in the nation dedicated exclusively to defending religious freedom for all Americans.

To arrange an interview, contact Peyton Luke at media@firstliberty.org or by calling 972-941- 4453.

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