UPDATE: The Senate Must Not Confirm Chai Feldblum

March 20, 2018
Washington, DC
Signatures updated 3/21/18

The Senate is currently considering the nomination of Chai Feldblum for reappointment to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) with a five-year term. We urge the Senate to reject her confirmation.

Feldblum has long held views that are out of step with conservative principles and President Trump’s agenda. Feldblum has publicly advocated that sex discrimination, as defined in current law, should be modified to include sexual orientation and gender identity. She also believes that religious liberty exemptions should be extremely narrow.

On the issue of religious liberty, in particular, Feldblum’s views are troubling. She has stated that when religious liberty and sexual liberty are in conflict, sexual liberty should win, and believes that those who disagree should be forced to comply. “To the extent that forced compliance with an equality mandate burdened an individual’s belief liberty,” she wrote in the Brooklyn Law Review, “my argument . . . is that such a burden is likely to be justified.” She has likewise openly disagreed with religious exemptions granted by the federal courts.

Since joining the EEOC, Feldblum has continued to advance an argument, long rejected by the courts, to interpret Title VII of the Civil Rights Act as protecting gays and lesbians from employment discrimination. In a Bloomberg article from 2016, Feldblum articulated her commitment to this interpretation, and underscored that she believed the EEOC should push this interpretation on the courts.

Feldblum’s narrow views on religious liberty are inconsistent with the Constitution and with Supreme Court precedent. Likewise, her insistence on championing a view of the Civil Rights Act that the courts have repeatedly dismissed displays a concerning lack of heed to the courts and congressional intent.

Given this, we believe Chai Feldblum should not be confirmed by the Senate for another five-year term at the EEOC and urge the Senate to reject her nomination.

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