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The invaluable Amy Howe of SCOTUSBlog points us to reports that the president*'s pick for Solicitor General is a D. In addition to his role defending California's ban on same-sex marriage, Cooper also signed a brief on behalf of the federal government supporting Bob Jones University in its challenge to the constitutionality of an Internal Revenue Service policy denying tax exemptions to religious institutions that discriminate based on race.

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The relative silence emanating from Bob Jones University is all the more remarkable given the intensity of the Republican primary in South Carolina, and the power that the religious right here holds.

In many ways, the school is still recovering from the 2000 campaign, when George W.

Bob Jones University and Liberty University, both conservative private institutions, have codified prohibitions on transgender identities and sexual relations outside of heterosexual marriage of the Christian variety.

For example, the Liberty Way student honor code says, “Sexual relations outside of a biblically ordained marriage between a natural-born man and a natural-born woman are not permissible at Liberty University.” Bob Jones says in its student handbook that the Christian Bible “names as sinful and prohibits any form of sexual activity between persons of the same sex.” The university says it expects all employees and students to abide by cited biblical statements on sexuality and gender identity.

The university has since dropped the interracial dating ban, but candidates have tended to avoid the campus.