ACLU, NYCLU Honor Couple at Center of ‘Masterpiece Cakeshop’ Court Fight by Andrew Denney, photographs by David Handschuh

David Mullins, left, and husband Charlie Craig before the NYCLU LGBT and HIV Project Annual cocktail reception at the offices of Cleary Gottlieb on Thursday.

Charlie Craig and David Mullins, the couple at the heart of the legal battle in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, were the featured guests on June 14 at an annual cocktail reception hosted by the New York Civil Liberties Union and the American Civil Liberties Union to highlight the groups’ advocacy for the LGBTQ community.

The reception was held at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton in Manhattan.

With a 7-2 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of Jack Phillips, a Colorado baker who refused to make a wedding cake for Craig and Mullins because of his religious opposition to same-sex marriage.

The six-year legal battle took a toll on the couple -- they said they received hate mail and death threats. And while they were “devastated” by the outcome of the case, Mullins said, the decision indicated that society’s views on rights for LGBTQ people have evolved -- he noted that the majority on the court acknowledged that same-sex couples are entitled to equal protections under the law.

“In a way, it was a win disguised as a loss,” Mullins said.

From left, Ria Tobacco Mar, senior staff attorney for the ACLU, James Esseks, director of the ACLU LGBT and HIV Project, David Mullins and husband Charlie Craig, plaintiffs in ‘Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission’ case, and Donna Lieberman, executive director of the NYCLU

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