Two of the Supreme Court justices appointed by President Trump, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett, sided with the liberal wing of the Supreme Court in the case of Arlene’s Flowers v. Washington, which concerned the constitutionality of state level mandates for Christian florists to provide flowers for gay weddings.
Kavanaugh, Barrett, the Bush-appointed John Roberts, and the three liberal justices united to ensure the Supreme Court would not hear this case, thereby affirming a lower court judgement. Meanwhile three conservatives judges indicated that they had supported hearing the case – Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and another Trump appointee, Neil Gorsuch.
The result came as a shock to many liberals and conservatives, who had expected Kavanaugh and particularly Barrett to be solidly aligned with the conservative faction of the court. However, this was not the only recent case where they sided with the liberals, having previously aligned with them on election integrity, Obamacare and religious liberty. Many commentators have suggested that Kavanaugh, Barrett and Roberts had now formed a new moderate faction on the court, which would stand in opposition to the Thomas-led conservative faction.