SCOTUS Prepares For Major Religious Rulings

SCOTUS Prepares For Major Religious Rulings

( – In June, Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh finishes up his first full term on the Supreme Court. He replaced the moderately Conservative Justice Anthony Kennedy, who retired in the summer of 2018. During his full term, Kavanaugh participated in both the selection process for cases and the ruling, leaning the court back to the right.

Even though COVID-19 pushed the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) to hold oral arguments through video conference, they’ll hand down a few high-profile decisions this month.


First up is June Medical Services LLC v. Russo.

The SCOTUS will choose whether or not to uphold a Louisiana law requiring doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges with a local hospital. In 2016, the Court handed down a decision in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, upholding their 1992 ruling, that a law is “constitutionally invalid” if it puts a “substantial obstacle” between a woman and an abortion. Kavanaugh may have the sway needed to keep this Louisiana law on the books.

Religious Liberty

There’s also a large grouping of cases surrounding religious liberty. Two cases concern whether or not religious employers can deny birth control coverage to their employees.

Two additional cases consider who is a “minister” and thus qualifies for the “ministerial exemption” to civil rights laws. If religious school teachers, like those displayed in the current cases, are considered ministers, then this religious exemption could grow.

Lastly, in the fight for religious liberty, Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue’s decision will show if “any direct or indirect appropriation or payment from any public fund,” such as a scholarship from Montana, can go to a religious institution. In this case, it’s a private, religious school in question.


Next, President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is not over yet. In the Department of Homeland Security v. University of California case, there’s a debate to determine if certain memos, including Secretary Kirstjen M. Nielsen’s memo, gave the required explanation of why the policy change would occur.

Repealing DACA has been a major goal of the Trump administration. It seems likely that they’ll deem the current paperwork adequate, leaving DACA in the dust. However, the SCOTUS could declare DACA unconstitutional, permanently ending the program. Lastly, the Court may uphold the lower decisions asking the administration to fix the paper trail.

In a few short weeks, we will see if Trump’s legacy of ending DACA will stand.

Each of these Supreme Court cases, as well as others set to come down the line this month, deal with the right of Americans to live their life as they see fit. Religious liberty must be protected, and this month could be an enormous win for Conservatives.

~Here’s to Your Prosperity!

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