Federalist Society Teleforum on Texas RFRA and Houston “HERO” Referendum

September 30th, 2015

Today at 2:00 ET/1:00 CT, I will be speaking on a Federalist Society Teleforum on Texas’s RFRA, along with John Eastman, Eugene Volokh, and Kathleen Hunker. Details are here.

Dial 888-752-3232 to Participate
Texas RFRA and the Houston “HERO” LGBT Referendum
A Teleforum Sponsored by the Federalist Society’s
Texas Chapters
Wednesday, September 30, 2015 | 1:00 p.m. CDT
Prof. John C. Eastman
Henry Salvatori Professor of Law & Community Service
Chapman University
School of Law
Prof. Josh Blackman
Assistant Professor of Law
South Texas
College of Law
Kathleen Hunker
Senior Policy Analyst
Texas Public Policy Foundation
Prof. Eugene Volokh
Gary T. Schwartz Professor of Law
School of Law
The Houston Equal Rights Ordinance (HERO) ballot initiative, which extends to housing & employment, has been described as an expansive LGBT anti-discrimination measure. The Texas Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the new Pastor Protection Act are intended to provide rights of conscience protection and some assurance of employment accommodation for religious objectors, in light of initiatives like HERO and the anti-discrimination ordinance in San Antonio. After the Supreme Court Obergefell v. Hodges decision, more and more states will face the conundrum encountered by states like Indiana, Kentucky, and now Texas, where the recently affirmed LGBT constitutional privacy interest is in tension with state and federal RFRA laws and other constitutional religious objector protections. Will states that desire to carve out religious conviction protections be eclipsed by the momentum of locally based anti-discrimination measures? Do federal laws provide sufficient public office and private party religious expression protection?