Gay Marriage News Watch: Updates from FL, OK, UT, CO, WI, IN, AR, and GA


AFER's Matt Baume fills us in on this week's marriage news, which includes a new ruling for equality in Florida, a second victory in Oklahoma, the Supreme Court's stay of recognition of Utah marriages, a stay for some counties in Colorado but not others, the DOJ's announcement that they'll defend marriage equality at SCOTUS, the 7th Circuit's schedule on Wisconsin and Indiana, and last week's brief filings in Louisiana, Arkansas, and Georgia.



  1. RonCharles says

    State court victories are some of the best for now as it is very unlikely that the US Supreme Court would overturn any state supreme court’s ruling in favour of gay marriage.

  2. Jade says

    When the federal district court in Utah struck down Utah’s marriage law a few days before Christmas last December, and the State’s request for a stay was denied by both the district court and the court of appeals, the Supreme Court unanimously issued a stay, blocking the district court’s judgment. It is quite rare for the Supreme Court to issue a stay when both lower courts have refused to do so, and the standard that it applies is whether the state had demonstrated a likelihood of success on the merits. The stay issued by the Supreme Court in the Utah case therefore outweighs all of the district court decisions that have recent invalidate state marriage laws combined.

    In dissent, Justice Anthony Kennedy said the court’s majority ignored the initiative process that led to the passage of Proposition 8.

    Key quotes from the ruling

    “What the court fails to grasp or accept is the basic premise of the initiative process. And it is this. The essence of democracy is that the right to make law rests in the people and flows to the government, not the other way around. Freedom resides first in the people without need of a grant from government,” he said. “The California initiative process embodies these principles and has done so for over a century. … In California and the 26 other states that permit initiatives and popular referendums, the people have exercised their own inherent sovereign right to govern themselves. The court today frustrates that choice.”

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