gay marriage

NPR News
2:58 pm
Fri January 16, 2015

U.S. Supreme Court Will Rule On Gay Marriage This Term

Jayne Rowse (left) speaks as April DeBoer kisses her during a news conference in Ferndale, Mich., on March 21, 2014. An appellate court upheld Michigan's — and three other states' — bans on gay marriage. The Supreme Court said Friday it will review the appellate court's decision. DeBoer and Rowse are the Michigan couple in the case.
Paul Sancya AP

Originally published on Fri January 16, 2015 4:17 pm

Updated at 5:04 p.m. ET

The U.S. Supreme Court will decide on gay marriage this term.

The justices said today they will review an appellate court's decision to uphold the ban on same-sex marriage in Ohio, Tennessee, Michigan and Kentucky. The four states are among 14 that ban same-sex marriage.

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Regional
3:17 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

Supreme Court May Decide This Month Whether It Will Hear Kentucky's Same-Sex Marriage Case

Originally published on Mon January 12, 2015 3:05 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court could decide this month whether it will consider same-sex marriage cases from Kentucky.

Last year, Kentucky same-sex couples challenged the state’s constitutional same-sex marriage ban, asking that their marriages from other jurisdictions be recognized. U.S. District Judge John Heyburn sided with the couples. Later in 2014, Heyburn ruled in a separate case that the state must also allow same-sex marriages to be performed in Kentucky. He also issued a stay on the decisions pending appeal.

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Regional
9:04 am
Thu December 18, 2014

Justices To Discuss Louisiana Gay Marriage Case

The Supreme Court has added the challenge to Louisiana's same-sex marriage ban to the agenda for the justices' closed-door conference on Jan. 9.

The action Wednesday does not mean the court will decide that day to hear a gay-marriage case. But the January meeting will be the first time the justices will have had the issue before them since they opted in October against taking up same-sex marriage.

The Louisiana case is unusual in that it has yet to be heard by a federal appeals court. But same-sex couples challenging an appellate ruling upholding bans in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee also could be considered by the court next month.

The justices would have time to hear and decide on gay marriage by late June, if they act in January.

Regional
7:09 am
Wed December 17, 2014

Tennessee Opposes Supreme Court Gay Marriage Hearing

The Tennessee attorney general is asking the U.S. Supreme Court not to hear an appeal of a ruling last month that upheld the state's ban on same-sex marriage. Instead, it wants the high court to let that favorable ruling stand.

The ruling by the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals marked a rare victory for gay rights opponents. But because it conflicts with gay marriage decisions in other circuits, legal observers believe it could push the Supreme Court to take up the issue of gay marriage.

In a Monday court filing, Tennessee argues that there is no need for the Supreme Court to review the case because both the 6th Circuit's opinion and Supreme Court precedent recognize the inherent power of the states to define marriage.

Regional
2:14 pm
Wed December 10, 2014

Beshear Asks Supreme Court To Rule On Same Sex Marriage Ban

Gov. Steve Beshear

In what some are calling an unusual move, Gov. Steve Beshear has filed a petition requesting the U.S. Supreme Court decide whether states can reject same-sex marriage.

It comes after a federal appeals court upheld Kentucky’s and several other states’ same-sex marriage bans.

Beshear says the nation’s highest court should decide whether states like Kentucky can prohibit same-sex marriage, and settle the question of whether Kentucky must recognize gay marriages performed out-of-state.

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Regional
1:28 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

Same-Sex Couples File Supreme Court Appeal

Same-sex couples seeking the right to marry are asking the Supreme Court to settle the issue of gay marriage nationwide.

Appeals being filed Friday urge the justices to review last week's lower court ruling that upheld anti-gay marriage laws in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee.

The ruling by the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was the first appellate ruling to side with states seeking to preserve gay marriage bans since the Supreme Court struck down part of a federal anti-gay marriage law last year.

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Regional
2:54 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

Court Rules Against Gay Marriage Bans In Indiana, Wisconsin

A U.S. appeals court in Chicago has ruled that gay marriage bans in Wisconsin and Indiana are unconstitutional.

Thursday's decision by a three-judge panel at the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals bumps the number of states where gay marriage will be legal from 19 to 21. The decision was unanimous.

The Wisconsin and Indiana cases shifted to Chicago after their attorneys general appealed separate lower court rulings in June tossing the bans. The 7th Circuit stayed those rulings pending its own decision.

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Regional
6:37 am
Thu August 7, 2014

Same-Sex Marriage Cases From Kentucky and 3 Other States Get Unprecendented Appeals Hearing

Timothy Love, left, and Larry Ysunza are one of the couples from Kentucky challenging the state's same-sex marriage ban.
Credit Alix Mattingly

In oral arguments Wednesday before a federal appeals court, Gov. Steve Beshear's attorney re-emphasized a stance that same-sex should not be allowed because the couples cannot procreate, raising issues for Kentucky's population growth and economy.

The three-judge panel from the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals will decide the fate of same-sex marriage bans in four states, including Kentucky, as the issue winds its way toward a likely appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The case could prove "pivotal" because, unlike past federal appeals courts that took up the same-sex marriage issue, the 6th Circuit may allow to stand state laws banning such marriage, legal observer Carl Tobias told Kentucky Public Radio before the arguments. 

If appeals court affirmed the state laws, these cases would have a greater chance of being argued before the Supreme Court, said Tobias, a law professor at the University of Richmond.

The appeals court will likely render an opinion within the next several months.

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Regional
4:23 pm
Tue August 5, 2014

Louisville Couple Eager to Take Gay Marriage Case Before Appellate Court

Michael De Leon (left) and Gregory Bourke (right) appear in a family picture with their 16-year-old son Isaiah and 15-year-old daughter Isabella.
Credit Gregory Bourke

Gregory Bourke of Louisville has waited a long time for his day in court.

“Thirty-two years we’ve been together," Bourke told WKU Public Radio.  "Most other couples would have been married and recognized and put all this to rest a long time ago.”

Bourke, his husband, and their adopted children will be in the courtroom Wednesday as the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals takes up gay marriage fights in Kentucky and three other states.

“I think this is a major historic moment in the history of American constitutional law," suggested Dr. Patti Minter, a legal and constitutional historian at WKU. 

The cases from Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio, and Michigan are each unique, but they all deal with whether statewide gay marriage bans violate the Constitution.

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Regional
8:43 am
Tue August 5, 2014

Kentucky and Tennessee Among Four States Having Same-Sex Marriage Bans Tested in Court

The legal arguments for and against gay marriage bans in Kentucky and three other states will be heard Wednesday in Cincinnati's 6th Circuit Court of Appeals.

The court will hear oral arguments in six cases to determine whether same-sex marriage bans in Michigan, Ohio, Tennessee and Kentucky are constitutional.

Laura Landenwich is an attorney for a same-sex couple in Louisville involved in this week’s hearing, challenging the state’s 2004 ban on same-sex marriage.

“What we are seeing with all of these decisions that have come down over the last year, is that once you start looking at the constitutional implications of these bans, they cannot pass constitutional review," Landenwich said. "So hopefully what we’re going to do is restore rights that should have already been there in the first place.”

The outcome of Wednesday’s hearing will likely lead to the cases being heard before the U.S. Supreme Court.

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