Department of Justice Prepared to Fight Same-Sex Marriage Bans
July 14, 2014 by Hayley Miller, Senior Digital Media Associate
On Sunday, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said that the Department of Justice (DOJ) is prepared to urge the U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) to uphold an appeals-court ruling that would prevent states from banning marriage equality.
Last month the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit issued a historic ruling affirming the December 2013 decision from U.S. District Judge Robert Shelby in Kitchen v. Herbert that the amendment to the Utah Constitution barring marriage for same-sex couples violates the U.S. Constitution.
In an interview with ABC News' Pierre Thomas, AG Holder admitted that if the Supreme Court heard any cases regarding same-sex marriage bans, the Justice Department would file a brief. Holder said that the brief, "will be in support of same-sex marriage."
The Tenth Circuit’s ruling is the broadest appellate court ruling in favor of a constitutional right for same-sex couples to marry. The court applied strict scrutiny in striking down Utah’s marriage ban, providing the highest level of protection to same-sex couples.
In the interview Holder said, “"I think a lot of these measures that ultimately will come before the court will not survive a heightened scrutiny examination."
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