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Fourth Circuit Decision Striking Down Virginia's Gay Marriage Ban to be Petitioned to Supreme Court


Late last week a county clerk in Virginia signaled her intention to ask the Supreme Court to consider the constitutionality of the state's ban on same-sex marriage. 

A similar appeal to the highest court in the land took place last week as well - with the 10th Circuit's decision overturning Oklahoma's gay marriage ban.

SCOTUSblog reports:

Screen Shot 2014-08-04 at 11.28.42 AMIn Virginia, Michele B. McQuigg [pictured], who is the county clerk of Prince William County, a jurisdiction just south of Washington, D.C., asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit to delay its July 28 decision striking down the Virginia ban on same-sex marriages.  She asked for a ninety-day delay to allow her to file a petition for review in the Supreme Court, which she said her lawyers would file by October 26.

Unlike most other states involved in court battles over same-sex marriage, Virginia allows its county clerks — the officers who issue marriage licenses — to be in court to defend the state ban.  In other states where a defense has been mounted behind such a prohibition, state officials have done so.

SCOTUS has complete discretion on which case to take, if any. 


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  1. Well, as we all suspected, it's time to sew this up once and for all - no idea what the SC will do, as much as they are in the pockets of everyone.

    Posted by: Tigernan | Aug 4, 2014 12:06:32 PM

  2. Would anyone like to give a prediction of when same-sex marriage will be granted by SCOTUS? Last night my friends were saying by summer of 2016. What do you think?

    Posted by: James in Charlotte | Aug 4, 2014 12:07:02 PM

  3. @James--if SCOTUS accepts the Oklahoma or the Virginia case, it could be by the summer of 2015.

    It will be a 5-4 split with Kennedy being the swing vote. That part is pretty much a foregone conclusion. Scalia will issue a scathing dissent. Thomas will maintain his characteristic silence.

    It's possible, I suppose, that Roberts will swing left on this issue, but I'm not holding my breath.

    Posted by: clayton | Aug 4, 2014 12:12:42 PM

  4. She seems like a nice lady FROM HER PICTURE. Looks certainly can be deceiving, huh?

    Posted by: ToThePoint | Aug 4, 2014 12:40:26 PM

  5. Before the DOMA decision, there was no guarantee that SCOTUS would do the right thing. Dozens of lower court decisions based on their DOMA decision later, it's a foregone conclusion that it will happen by a 5-4 split.

    It's now time to bring it before them so we can get our equality as soon as we possibly can.

    Posted by: oncemorewithfeeling | Aug 4, 2014 12:43:51 PM

  6. It's time to watch the slow excruciating begrudging evolution of Roberts.

    The Lady Alito is not for turning !

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Aug 4, 2014 1:03:30 PM

  7. @KYLER -- "SCOTUS has complete discretion AS TO whether IT takes EITHER case."

    If you want to be a journalist, learn to write English.

    Posted by: BusterLA | Aug 4, 2014 3:03:27 PM

  8. Marriage Equality nationwide is not going to bring "equality". It's a step but there is still a lot to be done.

    Posted by: Derrick | Aug 4, 2014 8:34:04 PM

  9. If they brought gay marriage to referendom again in VA it would pass. Why not do that?

    Posted by: Rin | Aug 5, 2014 8:36:10 AM

  10. @Rin: Because the U.S. Constitution is on our side and subjecting civil rights to the whims of the popular vote is wrong.

    Posted by: Ernie | Aug 5, 2014 8:45:13 AM

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