By HLPR Online Staff
Since the Supreme Court’s June 2013 ruling in United States v. Windsor—holding the federal Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional—gay rights advocates have brought a tidal wave of lawsuits across the country successfully challenging state bans on same-sex marriage. On October 6th of this year, the Supreme Court denied cert in cases from five states, leaving in place lower court rulings striking down same-sex marriage bans. Though many had hoped the Court would hear the cases and rule definitively for same-sex marriage, the Court was likely following its usual practice of waiting for a split of opinion in the federal courts of appeals before taking a case. During a talk at the University of Minnesota Law School this past September, Justice Ginsburg at least seemed to indicate that the Court may wait for a split before taking up same-sex marriage.
Thus, all eyes are now turned to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati, where a same-sex marriage case may produce the split needed to encourage the Supreme Court to act. The swing vote in the Sixth Circuit case is Judge Jeffrey Sutton, a former Scalia clerk and frequent conservative voter. With a decision expected any day now, Judge Sutton could be the vote to drive gay marriage to the Supreme Court.
But for those committed to true equality for gay people, what does a Supreme Court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage actually get you? [Read more…] about A SCOTUS Ruling on Gay Marriage: What’s it Actually Worth?