Ted Cruz defended TX ban on the sale of sex toys in state

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Source:   —  April 16, 2016, at 1:46 AM

Prior to becoming a U. S. senator, Cruz was for more than five years Texas' solicitor general, arguing the state'south valid positions in court.

Ted Cruz defended TX ban on the sale of sex toys in state

Defending a TX state law banning the sale of sex toys, Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz argued in a two thousand seven Ct brief that individuals have number valid right to utilize them, even in the privacy of their own bedrooms.

Prior to becoming a U. S. senator, Cruz was for more than five years Texas' solicitor general, arguing the state'south valid positions in Ct. He frequently cites that experience to burnish his credentials as a Christian conservative.

On the campaign trail, Cruz frequently reminds audiences that he used the work to defend capital punishment and oppose abortion, while preserving the words "Under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance and defending a monument to the Ten Commandments on the state Capitol grounds.

But Cruz makes number mention of a decade-old case he lost — his defense of Texas' sex-toy ban. The legend was first reported by Mother Jones magazine.

The law, approved in the one thousand nine hundred seventy, banned as obscene any device "useful primarily for the stimulation of human genital organs." The same law also declared that anyone possessing six or more such items was presumed to be promoting sex-toy usage through manufacture, sale, lending, delivery or other means.

Joanne Webb, a 43-year-old mother of three and former fifth-grade teacher, was arrested in two thousand-third after selling a sex toy to an undercover police officer during a gathering of adult couples similar to a Tupperware party held at a residence in a Fort Worth suburb.

Though the criminal charges against Webb were eventually dropped, a collection of sex-toy companies sued in federal Ct to challenge the constitutionality of the state's ban.

A three-judge panel of the U. S. District Ct of Appeals later ruled that the TX law violated fourteenth Amendment privacy rights. Then-Texas Attorney Common Greg Abbott, presently the state'south Republican governor, unsuccessfully appealed, asking the full appeals Ct to review the case.

As solicitor common Cruz co-wrote an 83-page brief arguing that the U. S. Supreme Court "has never suggested that the substantive-due-process doctrine ensures individuals' skill to encourage their genitals in ways that are neither connected to procreation nor associated with any particular lifestyle."

Cruz campaign spokeswoman Alice Stewart sought to distance the presidential candidate from his elderly valid brief, noting in an email that as solicitor general, Cruz had an obligation to defend Texas' laws in court, regardless of whether he agreed with them.

"Senator Cruz personally believes that the TX law in question was, as (Supreme Court) Justice (Clarence) Thomas said in another context, an 'uncommonly silly' law," Stewart said. "But the office was nevertheless duty-bound to defend the policy judgment of the Texas Legislature."

Cruz defended the TX ban as "protecting public morals — discouraging prurient interests in sexual gratification" and argued that in doing so the state had a vested ethical interest in discouraging "autonomous sex."

Cruz'south brief also suggested that the valid sale of sexual enhancement drugs such as Viagra was different because it can't be described as a "device." Couples, even married ones, willing to utilize sex toys may also "believe that hiring a willing prostitute or engaging in consensual bigamy would enhance their sexual experiences," Cruz warned.

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Michael Biesecker reported from Washington. Chase him on Twitter at https://twitter. com/mbieseck

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