skip to main content

Listen

Read

Watch

Schedules

Programs

Events

Give

Account

Donation Heart Ribbon

Obama Urges Supreme Court To Overturn California’s Gay Marriage Ban

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a historic argument for gay rights, President Barack Obama on Thursday urged the Supreme Court to overturn California's same-sex marriage ban and turn a skeptical eye on similar prohibitions across the country.

Getty Images

Same-sex marriage proponent Kat McGuckin of Oaklyn, New Jersey, holds a gay marriage pride flag while standing in front of the Supreme Court November 30, 2012 in Washington, DC.

The Obama administration's friend-of-the-court brief marked the first time a U.S. president has urged the high court to expand the right of gays and lesbians to wed. The filing unequivocally calls on the justices to strike down California's Proposition 8 ballot measure, although it stops short of the soaring rhetoric on marriage equality Obama expressed in his inaugural address in January.

California is one of eight states that give gay couples all the benefits of marriage through civil unions or domestic partnership but don't allow them to wed. The denial of marriage to same-sex couples, "particularly where California at the same time grants same-sex partners all the substantive rights of marriage, violates equal protection," the administration said.

The administration's position, if adopted by the court, would likely result in gay marriage becoming legal in the seven other states: Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon and Rhode Island.

In the longer term, the administration urges the justices to subject laws that discriminate on sexual orientation to more rigorous review than usual, a standard that would imperil other state bans on same-sex marriage.

The brief marks the president's most expansive view of gay marriage and signals that he is moving away from his previous assertion that states should determine their own marriage laws. Obama, a former constitutional law professor, signed off on the administration's legal argument last week following lengthy discussions with Attorney General Eric Holder and Solicitor General Donald Verrilli.

Comments

Avatar for user 'Dothscribble'

Dothscribble | February 28, 2013 at 5 p.m. ― 1 year, 4 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

( )

Avatar for user 'Missionaccomplished'

Missionaccomplished | March 1, 2013 at 9:36 a.m. ― 1 year, 4 months ago

Everyone knew he was going to go forward with this. Gotta reward those voters.

As for Doltscribble, I would have been interested to read his post. This person goes too far all the time.

( | suggest removal )