A Louisiana appeals court has sided
with a lower court's ruling declaring Democratic Governor John Bel
Edwards' order protecting LGBT workers unconstitutional.
According to The
Times-Picayune, a three-judge panel of Louisiana's First
Circuit Court of Appeal agreed with Republican Attorney General Jeff
Landry, who said that the governor had exceeded his authority in
issuing the order.
Edwards' order prohibits discrimination
on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity among state
agencies and contractors doing business with the state. Religious
organizations are exempt.
Last year, Judge Todd Hernandez said
that Edwards' order is “a violation of the Louisiana Constitution's
separation of powers doctrine and an unlawful usurp of the
constitutional authority vested in the legislative branch of the
The three-judge panel, all of whom are
Republicans, said that Edwards' order “goes beyond a mere policy
statement or directive to fulfill law, because there is no current
state or federal law specifically outlining anti-discrimination laws
concerning and/or defining sexual orientation or gender identity.”
Edwards responded in a statement.
“Discrimination in state government and by state contractors is
wrong, makes us weaker, and is bad for business and economic
development. Even President Trump agrees, as he has kept in place a
federal executive order which is virtually identical to the order I
put in place."
Landry applauded the ruling, saying
that Louisiana has a governor, not a king.