Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson has filed to dismiss a lawsuit against him from Seattle Pacific University, a private school associated with the Free Methodist Church, arguing that he’s not violating the university’s constitutional rights by requesting information about its hiring practices.
Ferguson in late July confirmed his office was investigating the university for potential illegal discrimination against LGBTQ people due to the school’s employment policies. His announcement came after SPU sued Ferguson, claiming his probe aims to influence the university “in its application and understanding of church teaching.” SPU is represented by the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty.
“The First Amendment does not provide religious organizations with such sweeping immunity that it is unconstitutional for the government simply to ask them for information,” Ferguson said in the motion he filed Aug. 18.
A court hearing on the motion is scheduled Sept….