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Benton County Judge to Rule on Arlene’s Flowers July 8

Arlenes Flowers Richland
(Arlene’s Flowers Facebook Page)

Friday, attorneys for the Washington State Attorney General’s office and Arlene’s Flowers presented arguments in court.

The AG’s office is suing Arlene’s and its owner, Baronelle Stutzman, for allegedly violating a customer’s civil rights laws by declining to provide floral services to a same-sex wedding.

AG Bob Ferguson’s office says state civil rights laws prohibit discrimination based upon sexual orientation. Stutzman’s lawyers say forcing her to provide the services violates her rights of religious freedom and freedom of expression.

They say this is no different than if a musician were forced to compose a piece of music or perform at such an event against their religious principles.

Janet Guthrie of the AG’s office issued a statement Friday:

“Judge Sal Mendoza heard oral arguments on both Washington v. Arlene’s Flowers and Ingersoll v. Arlene’s Flowers today in Benton County Superior Court. He consolidated the cases for discovery and announced he would rule on the motions during the week of July 8.”

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