"I think people are upset. They are upset and it's understandable," said Travis Weber, vice president for policy at the Family Research Council, a Christian nonprofit and activist group.
Weber said his group was not holding Kavanaugh's decision against him, because while the decision was "not the greatest result," it was largely procedural. Though some suspect that Kavanaugh's vote was designed to deflect criticism from the left after a brutal confirmation process, Weber said that at this point it was impossible to know for sure.
"If that's what he's doing here, that's a big problem," Weber said. "We don't know that."
To Nicholas Drake, pastor at Richland Baptist, a rural church in Kingdom City, Missouri, Kavanaugh's decision could not have been more disappointing. In an interview, Drake said that during the nomination process he was hopeful about where Kavanaugh would land on the issue, but that he was hearing "conflicting things."
Kavanaugh's comments during his confirmation hearings gave him more reason for concern. Kavanaugh said at the time that Roe v. Wade, the landmark abortion ruling, was "an important precedent of the Supreme Court that has been reaffirmed many times."
"It was clear that he was pro-life, but at the same time he seemed to be very big on the precedent, so I thought, 'Hmm,'" Drake said. "It gave me a hesitance about whether he would be able to side with the conservatives, and so far, this most recent decision proved that he hasn't."
Drake said he was not as concerned by Kavanaugh's apparent break with conservatives in a death penalty case earlier this year. He said the issue was important, "because it's life," but he said that "there is a huge difference between protecting the innocent unborn and whether the state can execute someone who is proven to be guilty."