U.S. Supreme Court Refuses to Block Same-Sex Marriages in Oregon
Same-sex marriage in Oregon weathered another hurdle this past Wednesday after the U.S. Supreme Court refused to block gay marriages. The ruling comes in response to a request from the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), an organization that has been trying to overturn a recent ruling declaring Oregon's same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional.
The battle began when four same-sex couples filed a lawsuit to overturn the state's ban on gay marriage. After Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum refused to defend the ban in federal court, NOM stepped in to argue on behalf of keeping gay marriage illegal. U.S. District Judge Michael McShane denied NOM's standing in the Oregon Federal Court before ruling on May 19 th that Oregon's ban on gay marriage violated the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution. In the weeks that followed, hundreds of same-sex couples throughout the state received marriage licenses.
Prior to McShane overturning the ban, NOM made a series of unsuccessful attempts to intervene and stop court proceedings. The organization filed yet another petition with the U.S. Supreme Court requesting that same-sex marriages be stopped. Wednesday's ruling denied that request. Although same-sex marriages will remain legal in Oregon, NOM has announced its intent to continue its fight. The next appeal is in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to determine if NOM can intervene.
Judge McShane's ruling on May 19 th made Oregon the 18 th state – plus the District of Columbia – to recognize marriage between committed and loving same-sex couples. The following day, Pennsylvania became the 19 th state. Oregon's same-sex marriage victories may not have been easily earned, but for many couples and activists, it was well worth the fight.
At McKinley Irvin, our family lawyers support marriage equality in Oregon and the fight for marriage equality nationwide. Our legal team continues to support LGBT families in need of personalized, compassionate, and exceptional legal representation.
For more information about our legal services and how our firm may be of assistance with your particular case, contact us today.