Lambda Legal and 35 LGBT Groups Demand President Trump Withdraw Jeff Mateer's Nomination to Federal Bench

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October 16, 2017
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Today, Lambda Legal and 35 other national, state and local LGBT advocacy groups sent a letter to members of the United States Senate strongly urging them to demand that President Trump immediately withdraw his nomination of Jeff Mateer to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, declaring that “his brazen contempt for LGBT people renders him wholly unfit for a lifetime appointment to the federal bench.”

The letter points to a number of examples of Mr. Mateer’s anti-LGBT record, which is “too voluminous to detail in this short letter,” which all are emblematic of President Trump's hostility towards the LGBT community, underscored by his inflammatory address to the attendees of the anti-LGBT Value Voters summit this past weekend, as well as his forthcoming address to the anti-LGBT Heritage Foundation, scheduled for tomorrow evening.

In its letter on behalf of three dozen LGBT groups, Lambda Legal describes how Mr. Mateer “has spent his professional life denigrating and vilifying LGBT people and their families,” including at a public speech where he “openly mocked a transgender girl whose parents successfully sued her elementary school for preventing her from using the girls’ bathroom.”

In that same speech, he “decried marriage equality as ‘the destruction of marriage,’ and claimed that it would open the door to ‘disgusting’ new forms of matrimony, including ‘people marrying their pets.’” He also has claimed that the Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling in Obergefell is “not the law of the land.” 

Mr. Mateer’s record came to light in late September when CNN reported that he had referred to transgender children as part of “Satan's plan,” his endorsement of the controversial and widely-condemned practice of conversion therapy and his extensive record of putting religious beliefs above the rule of law.

The letter concludes that: “Mr. Mateer’s appointment to the bench would cause grave harm to the LGBT community, as well as many other communities who rely on the federal judiciary to administer fair and impartial justice. His record of vicious and hateful statements combined with his portfolio of extreme anti-LGBT advocacy make Mr. Mateer uniquely and demonstrably unfit for a job as a federal judge.”