Supreme Court to hear gay wedding cake case

WASHINGTON (CNN) — The Supreme Court has agreed to hear a religious liberty case concerning a Colorado cake artist who refused to make a cake for a same-sex couple’s wedding reception, claiming that to do so violated his religious liberty under the Constitution.

The Court will take up the case, Masterpiece v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, in its next term, which starts in October.

The Supreme Court also ruled in favor of two married same-sex couples in Arkansas who challenged a state law that did not allow both members of a same-sex couple to be listed as parents on a birth certificate.

The decision in Pavan v. Smith was 6 to 3 and brings up equal protection concerns two years after the Supreme Court cleared the way for same sex couples.

The cake case

The case concerns a Colorado cake artist who refused to make a cake for a same-sex couple claiming that to do so violated his religious liberty under the federal constitution.

The controversy began in July 2012 when David Mullins and Charlie Craig visited Masterpiece Cakeshop to order a cake for their upcoming wedding reception. The shop is owned by Jack Phillips who has been designing custom cakes for 22 years.

Phillips informed the couple that he could not create a cake honoring same-sex marriage because doing so would conflict with his sincerely held religious beliefs.

He said he was happy to create other types of cakes for the couple. The couple filed a complaint with the Colorado Civil Rights Division, which found that Phillips had violated the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act. Lower courts ruled in favor of the couple.