U.S. Supreme Court to Decide Whether State Bans on Same-Sex Marriage are Unconstitutional

Bozeman Lawyers, Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court has granted certiorari in the same-sex marriage cases arising from the states of Ohio, Tennessee, Michigan and Kentucky. Within legal circles, the Supreme Court’s decision was expected. Last November, Montana Federal District Court Judge Brian Morris overturned Montana’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, stating:

This decision overturns a Montana Constitutional amendment approved by the voters of Montana. Yet the United States Constitution exists to protect disfavored minorities from the will of the majority[.]

To date, 36 states allow same-sex marriage, including Montana. So far, every federal appellate court, with the exception of the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, has ruled that same-sex marriage marriage bans are unconstitutional under the Due Process and/or Equal Protection clauses of the U.S. Constitution. The Sixth Circuit, which includes the states of Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee, held that voters and state legislatures, rather than courts, should decide whether to allow or ban same-sex marriage.

The New York Times has described the issue as “one of the great civil rights questions of the age[.]”

You can read CNN’s article on the Montana decision here.

You can read the New York Time’s article on the Supreme Court’s decision to grant certiori here.

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