Oregon Attorney General Tells Federal Judge to Reject NOM’s Attempt to Intervene in Gay Marriage Case

Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum has filed a brief urging U.S. District Judge Michael McShane to reject the National Organization for Marriage's attempts to intervene in a case challenging the state's ban on gay marriage.

RosenblumNOM stepped in to file papers a week before the initial hearings when it realized there were no parties defending the anti-gay law.

The Oregonian reports:

NOM filed a motion to intervene in the case less than 48 hours before McShane held oral arguments on April 23 on why the parties in the case believe that Oregon's prohibition on same-sex marriage violates federal constitutional protections.

At the time, John Eastman, NOM's chairman and attorney, said his group wanted to intervene to to represent voters who approved the 2004 state constitutional amendment limiting marriage to one man and one woman. He said the intervention request came as late as it did because the extent of Rosenblum's legal reasoning wasn't made clear until mid-March and it took his group time to round up Oregon NOM members who could serve as parties in the case.

Rosenblum scoffed at that reasoning, noting that she held a Feb. 20 press conference announcing that she would not defend Oregon's ban on gay marriage. She noted that NOM also knew of her decision since it issued a press release condemning her.

…Rosenblum also said that "NOM and its members have no right to substitute their voice or their judgment for that of the Attorney General simply because they disagree with the chief law officer’s conclusions."

McShane has scheduled May 14 oral arguments on NOM's motion. NOM has until Friday to respond to Rosenblum.