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Read Justice Sotomayor's dissent in same-sex wedding website case

Justice Sonia Sotomayor during the formal group photograph at the Supreme Court on Oct. 7, 2022.
Bloomberg
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Bloomberg via Getty Images
Justice Sonia Sotomayor during the formal group photograph at the Supreme Court on Oct. 7, 2022.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor read a long and impassioned dissent from the bench Friday in a case where a majority of justices sided with a Colorado web designer who refused to create websites for same-sex weddings.

Sotomayor's lengthy dissent was a dramatic scene during a court term where oral dissents have been rare.

In her dissent to Justice Neil Gorsuch's majority opinion, Sotomayor wrote that "Today, the Court, for the first time in its history, grants a business open to the public a constitutional right to refuse to serve members of a protected class."

She noted that today's ruling comes amid a "backlash to the movement for liberty and equality for gender and sexual minorities."

"New forms of inclusion have been met with reactionary exclusion," she said. "This is heartbreaking. Sadly, it is also familiar. When the civil rights and women's rights movements sought equality in public life, some public establishments refused. Some even claimed, based on sincere religious beliefs, constitutional rights to discriminate. The brave Justices who once sat on this Court decisively rejected those claims."

Read her dissent:

You can read the full opinion here.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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