Supreme Court Closely Divided On Same-Sex Marriage In Historic Case

by David Kurtz,  Talking Points Memo

The nine justices fell along mostly predictable ideological lines, with the inscrutable Justice Anthony Kennedy seeming the most in play, as had been expected from the outset. The four liberal justices seemed clearly inclined to rule that the bans on gay marriage were unconstitutional on equal protection grounds. Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor were particularly vocal during the questioning. Samuel Alito was the most vocal of the conservative justices, although Chief Justice Roberts and Antonin Scalia were consistently engaged. As is his custom, Clarence Thomas did not speak during the oral arguments.

The case, Obergefell v. Hodges, came to the Supreme Court from the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, which upheld state bans on gay marriage, in Ohio, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Michigan.

The plaintiffs in the cases before the court represented a cross section of Americans aversely affected by state gay marriage bans, including: gay couples banned from legally marrying; a widowed gay man whose Maryland marriage is not recognized in Ohio; gay couples who aren’t both legally recognized as the parents of artificially conceived children; and gay parents of an adopted child who are not both legally recognized as adoptive parents.  Read the entire story.

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