Denying services to a gay couple is protected free speech, the court ruled.
The Arizona Supreme Court granted businesses a right to discriminate against same-sex couples on Monday. By a 4–3 vote, the court carved an exemption into Phoenix’s human rights ordinance to let businesses refuse to sell custom wedding invitations to gay customers. The decision is rooted in the Arizona Constitution and is thus effectively insulated from review by the U.S. Supreme Court. It also contains no clear principle limiting its reach to same-sex couples or to custom invitations—potentially giving Arizona wedding vendors a broad right to discriminate in the name of free speech.