White House Withdraws Judicial Nomination of Fiercely Anti-LGBTQ Jeff MateerBy Shane Stahl • December 14, 2017 • 1:42 pm
On Wednesday, the White House withdrew the nominations of two individuals for federal judgeships, including Jeff Mateer, outspoken about his disrespect and contempt for the LGBTQ community. Senator Chuck Grassley of Tennessee, the head of the Senate Judiciary Committee, had earlier urged the White House to reconsider both its choices.
Mateer is notorious for his discriminatory stances on issues related to the LGBTQ community. In a 2015 speech, he openly mocked a transgender girl whose parents had successfully sued her school district for restricting her access to the restroom. Following that, he stated that transgender children were part of “how Satan’s plan is working, and the destruction that is going on.” Furthermore, in the same speech, Mateer admitted, “Listen, I attend a Baptist church. We discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation.”
Mateer has also made negative and derogatory comments regarding gay marriage, anti-discrimination policies, and diversity trainings and seminars. In the role of District Court Judge for the Eastern District of Texas, Mateer would have been expected to disregard personal biases, listen carefully to all arguments, and then be a voice for the government to bring justice in legal cases. His history of anti-LGBTQ stances made it clear that he was unfit to serve in such a capacity.
In October, 36 advocacy organizations committed to LGBTQ equality, including Freedom For All Americans, sent a letter to the Senate demanding they vote down Mateer’s nomination. Senator John Cornyn of Texas, the Majority Whip, was troubled by the fact that Mateer did not disclose his speeches where anti-LGBTQ remarks were made. He said in a statement: “He did not disclose the information before the judicial evaluation committee. That’s a serious breach of protocol.”
Freedom For All Americans is proud to have joined with the 35 other advocacy organizations in opposing Jeff Mateer’s nomination, and is satisfied with the White House’s nomination withdrawal. Every American should have the opportunity to be taken seriously before a federal judge – and we must keep pushing for fair judges in the courts.