President Trump’s nominee to the federal bench in Texas, Jeff Mateer, is an unapologetic bigot. To Mateer, who currently serves as First Assistant Attorney General in Texas, trans people are proof of “Satan’s plan” and anti-LGBTQ discrimination, well, that’s just how he operates.
On Tuesday, Vice News published audio of Mateer speaking at the National Religious Liberties Conference in 2015. In the audio, Mateer openly admits to discrimination and argues his bigoted beliefs should not disqualify him from serving on the federal bench. Trump nominated Mateer to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas in September.
“Guess what? I attend a conservative Baptist church. We discriminate, alright. On the basis of sexual orientation, we discriminate,” Mateer said. “Does that mean I can’t be a judge? In some states, I think that’s true, unfortunately.”
Mateer described federal diversity training as “nothing less than brainwashing” during the speech and announced encouraged federal employees to boycott the programs on religious grounds. He also claimed separation of church and state wasn’t mandated by the Constitution. “That phrase isn’t in the U.S. Constitution,” Mateer contended. “It’s nowhere.”
Audio of Mateer’s speeches at the conference, named “Seven Things Every Christian Employee Should Know” and “Are You Ready? Protecting Your Church or 501(c)(3) Ministry,” was obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union and given to Vice News.
It was previously reported by CNN that Mateer described trans children as proof that “Satan’s plan was working” and advocated for “conversion therapy” (a tortuous, totally discredited attempt to “cure” LGBTQ people) in two 2015 speeches.
Spurred by Mateer’s apparent disdain for LGBTQ rights and people, a group of 36 LGBTQ advocacy groups sent a letter on Tuesday demanding his nomination be revoked.
“Mr. Mateer’s appointment to the bench would cause grave harm to the LGBT community, as well as many other communities who rely on the federal judiciary to administer fair and impartial justice,” the letter reads. “His record of vicious and hateful statements combined with his portfolio of extreme anti-LGBT advocacy make Mr. Mateer uniquely and demonstrably unfit for a job as a federal judge.”