Monday, August 25, 2014

171.2 - same-sex marriage justice delayed

Update 2: same-sex marriage justice delayed

Our next update is some news that isn't truly bad, but it is disappointing.

The Supreme Court has agreed to issue a stay of a ruling by the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals which had struck down Virginia's ban on same-sex marriages. The stay prevents the ruling from going into effect prior to any appeals and so blocks, temporarily, the hopes of same-sex couples in the state to marry.

The Circuit Court had refused a request to issue such a stay pending an appeal of its decision to the Supreme Court, something courts usually do only when they are very confident the decision will not be overturned.

Still, the issuance of the stay was not unexpected: Previously, a federal district court in Utah had refused to stay its ruling overturning that state's ban and when the 10th Circuit Appeals Court likewise declined to stay the ruling, the Supreme Court stepped in and did it. And again, the thing to remember is a stay is not a defeat, it merely means the effect of a ruling is held off until appeals go through. If one of the pro-marriage-justice rulings was to be overturned, that would be a loss. A stay is merely a delay.

A bit of good news in the midst of the disappointment is that Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring has repeated his stand that he will not defend the state's ban and believes the courts ruled correctly in striking it down.

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