Testifying before a House committee on Tuesday about supposed threats to religious freedom in the U.S., Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver struggled to defend his support for allowing businesses to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation.
New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler grilled Staver about his view that it would be wrong for a wedding photographer to discriminate against a Jewish couple because of a religious objection, but that the photographer is free to discriminate against a same-sex couple.
First, Staver tried to avoid the question by saying a photographer wouldn’t refuse to work for a Jewish wedding, but ultimately agreed that such anti-Jewish discrimination is in fact a violation of the law.
“I don’t see any difference at all” between refusing a Jewish couple and a gay couple, Nadler said.
He continued: “I’m holding out myself in commerce and my religious belief is that I don’t want black people or Jewish people or gay people in my restaurant and the federal government says that is discrimination, is that a violation of the freedom of religion?”
“No,” Staver conceded.