WASHINGTON (AP) The Supreme Court decided Monday against a high-stakes, election-year case about the competing rights of gay and lesbian couples and merchants who refuse to provide services for same-sex weddings.
The justices handed bakers in the Portland, Oregon, area a small victory by throwing out a state court ruling against them and ordering judges to take a new look at their refusal to make a wedding cake for a lesbian couple.
The high courts brief order directs appellate judges in Oregon to consider last terms Supreme Court ruling in favor of a baker from Colorado who would not make a cake for a same-sex wedding. The court ruled that baker Jack Phillips was subjected to anti-religious bias in the Colorado Civil Rights Commissions determination that he violated state anti-discrimination in refusing to bake the couples wedding cake. The Oregon appellate ruling came before the courts decision in Phillips case.