Last Friday, The Daily Wire reported on recent moves that the administration of Yale Law School — which is perennially ranked as the top law school in the nation — has taken to undermine and sabotage career opportunities for socially conservative law students. Specifically, Yale Law School, amidst a torrent of vituperative campus backlash from culturally aggressive leftist students against conservative Christian students, adopted a new “nondiscrimination policy” for its Summer Public Interest Fellowship (SPIF), Career Options Assistance Program (COAP), and post-graduate public interest fellowships. Most prominently under the new policy, the popular Blackstone Legal Fellowship, hosted every summer for conservative Christian law students by the Alliance Defending Freedom, would be stripped of all university sponsorship and funding.
Now, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), who has a career background as an exceptionally gifted constitutional lawyer and is an alum of Yale rival Harvard Law School, is firing back at Yale Law School and its dean, Heather Gerken.
The Washington Examiner reports:
Sen. Ted Cruz is opening an investigation into Yale Law School for what he claims is discrimination against students with “traditional Christian views” and threatened legal action if they do not cooperate.
The Texas Republican sent a letter, dated Thursday, to Yale Law School Dean Heather Gerken notifying her that he will investigate a new law school policy which Cruz said stems from “unconstitutional animus and a specific discriminatory intent… .” Cruz believes that Yale’s policy change could deny financial assistance to students based on the religious affiliation of the organization for which they choose to work.
Cruz warned Yale “the investigation may include a subpoena… or a referral to the Department of Justice for action against the school” and said that the letter was “notice of [Yale’s] obligation to take reasonable steps to retain all … information relevant to this investigation and potential litigation.”
Cruz referred to Yale Law School’s new purported “nondiscrimination policy” as, ironically, “transparently discriminatory” against conservative Christian law students.
“As one of the nation’s most respected law schools, Yale Law School has an obligation to protect intellectual diversity and to respect the constitutional rights of its students,” Cruz wrote. “The First Amendment protects both free speech and the Free Exercise of religion. Yale’s new policy does neither. Instead, it appears that the policy arose from unconstitutional animus and a specific discriminatory intent both to blacklist Christian organizations like the Alliance Defending Freedom and to punish Yale students whose values or religious faith lead them to work there.”
Cruz’s letter then notes that the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on the Constitution, over which he presides, is formally opening an investigation into Yale Law School’s new policy. In lawyerly fashion, the letter then lists all the various documents that, pursuant to the announcement of the subcommittee’s investigation, Yale must now retain.
Earlier today, Yale Law School posted an official statement in response to Cruz’s announcement of an investigation:
On April 4, 2019, Senator Ted Cruz sent a letter to the Dean of Yale Law School asserting that the Law School engages in religious discrimination. He bases this claim on a Law School announcement that it will not financially support employment positions unless they are open to all of our student body. …
We recently decided that the Law School will require that any employment position it financially supports be open to all of our students. If an employer refuses to hire students because they are Christian, black, veterans, or gay, we will not fund that position.
We are in the process of putting this policy in place. It will solely concern hiring practices. It will not inquire about political goals, litigation strategies, or policy objectives of the organization. It will also include an accommodation for religious organizations and a ministerial exception, consistent with antidiscrimination principles.
We cherish and value all of our students no matter whom they love, where they worship, or how they vote. That’s why we cannot, consistent with our nondiscrimination policy, subsidize employers who discriminate among them.
Allow this lawyer to translate that statement into non-legalese: “Sophistry.”
As The Daily Wire also noted last week, an email (obtained by The Daily Wire) sent from Yale Law School’s LGBT student group (Outlaws) to the entire student body egregiously seemed to call for the school’s admissions office to begin to discriminate against conservatives:
Additionally, we are asking the Yale Law School administration to clarify its [SPIF] and admissions policies regarding organizations that discriminate against members of its community. Will students be able to receive SPIF funding to push discriminatory agendas during their summers? Will students be admitted to this community who, for example, have worked to sue cities and states for passing anti-discrimination laws and ordinances?