Christian Business Owner Tries New Legal Strategy To Refuse Service For Gay Weddings

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Photo: Figurines are depicted in an embrace at a wedding cake display at Masterpiece Cakeshop, in Denver,
Figurines are depicted in an embrace as part of the wedding cake display at Masterpiece Cakeshop in Denver, Thursday, June 6, 2013.

Lorie Smith of 303 Creative in Denver is a graphic designer who creates wedding websites. She says as a Christian, she believes that marriage is between one man and one woman, and she doesn't want to use her artistic talents to create sites for gay couples.

Smith's lawyers have filed a lawsuit against the Colorado Civil Rights Commission using what's known as a "pre-emptive challenge," a tactic often used by liberal groups. The issues raised are reminiscent of the Masterpiece Cakeshop case, in which a Lakewood baker refused on religious grounds to make wedding cake for a gay couple; that action was deemed discriminatory by the Colorado Civil Rights Division in 2014.

Melissa Hart, director of the Byron R. White Center for the Study of American Constitutional Law at the University of Colorado, spoke with Colorado Matters host Ryan Warner.