NEVADA: Anti-Gay Group Bypasses Appeals Court And Asks SCOTUS To Rule On Same-Sex Marriage Ban
The anti-gay group that just won the battle to uphold Nevada's same-sex marriage ban is apparently fearful that Lambda Legal's promised appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court won't go their way. Yesterday they went directly to the Supreme Court even though they just won their case.
The Coalition for the Protection of Marriage said the case crystalizes the fundamental question of whether the legal definition of marriage should be changed from a man and a woman to the union of any two people. The coalition filed documents seeking what is known as a writ of certiorari that asks the Supreme Court to take the case before it can be considered by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.SCOTUSblog has details: "The Nevada petition has now been docketed as 12-689. The response is currently due January 7. There is no word yet on whether its filing will have any impact on the other pending cases on same-sex marriage issues."
The Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund vowed last week to appeal to the 9th Circuit a federal judge's ruling in Reno that Nevada has a "legitimate state interest" in prohibiting the recognition of same-sex couples. Officials with Lambda, a gay rights advocacy organization based in Los Angeles, didn't immediately respond to requests for comment.
The coalition, based in Boise, Idaho, opposes gay marriage and was involved in the Nevada case. Monte Stewart, a lawyer for the group, declined comment on the effort to have the Supreme Court intervene. "The fundamental marriage issue is whether ... the legal definition of marriage (should) be changed from the union of a man and a woman to the union of any two persons," the coalition filing said.
Buzzfeed's Chris Geidner speculates:
By filing the petition on Wednesday, it is possible the coalition is attempting to delay further the court's decision on which of the cases related to same-sex couples' constitutional rights it will be taking this year. In the past this year, it has appeared that the court held off on considering any of the petitions until all of them were fully briefed. And, with the court scheduled to discuss the 10 petitions at its conference on Friday, this petition could be a last-ditch effort to hold off a decision on which of those to hear.REMINDER: Tomorrow there may be news in our long SCOTUS waiting game with the DOMA and Prop 8 cases.