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Ted Cruz Joins Clarence Thomas, Targets LGBTQ Rights

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Ted Cruz and Clarence Thomas

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, of Texas, said Saturday that he believes gay marriage should be illegal, arguing that the Supreme Court was “clearly wrong” when it decided in a historic 2015 ruling that same-sex marriage was legal under the Constitution.

During the latest episode of his Verdict+ podcast, Cruz discussed what was described as the “vulnerability” of the Obergefell ruling, a landmark LGBTQ rights case, that was decided in a 5 to 4 ruling in June 2015. The Supreme Court decision made it illegal for any state, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories to deny a marriage certificate to same-sex couples.

In their decision, the justices cited the Due Process Clause and the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment of the Constitution.

But Cruz argued that the ruling was not correctly decided, making a similar argument to Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas in his concurring opinion when the top judicial body formally overturned Roe v. Wade, which ended a woman’s right to an abortion, in late June.

“Obergefell, like Roe v. Wade, ignored two centuries of our nation’s history,” Cruz said in a clip from his podcast uploaded to YouTube. “Marriage was always an issue that was left to the states. We saw states before Obergefell—some states were moving to allow gay marriage, other states were moving to allow civil partnerships. There were different standards that the states were adopting.”

The Texas Republican contended that the “democratic process would have continued to operate” if the Supreme Court had not ruled the way it did. “In Obergefell the Court said, ‘no, we know better than you,’ and now every state must sanction and permit gay marriage,” he said.

“That decision was clearly wrong when it was decided,” Cruz said, complaining that the Court was “overreaching.” The GOP senator then pointed out however, that the Supreme Court’s ruling overturning Roe suggested that same-sex marriage will be treated differently.

“In Dobbs, what the Supreme Court said is ‘Roe is different because it’s the only one of the cases that involves the taking of a human life and it’s qualitatively different,'” he explained. “I agree with that proposition.”

Cruz’s remarks and Thomas’ opinion on gay marriage have alarmed the LGBTQ community.

Thomas wrote that the Supreme Court “should reconsider all of this Court’s substantive due process precedents, including Griswold, Lawrence, and Obergefell,” arguing that those precedents were “demonstrably erroneous.”