Supreme Court agrees to hear Prop 8 and DOMA Cases
Oregon’s path to the freedom to marry still requires public vote
The U.S. Supreme Court announced today that it will review both the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that Prop 8 is unconstitutional and the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals case ruling the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unconstitutional.
“This decision brings us closer to a day when all caring and committed couples in our country will have the freedom to marry the person they love,” said Jeana Frazzini, executive director of Basic Rights Oregon, “and it underscores the importance of the work ahead of us in Oregon.”
If the court repeals Proposition 8, committed gay and lesbian couples in California will once again have the freedom to marry. If the courts overturn DOMA, it would afford federal recognition to legally-married gay and lesbian couples in the nine states plus the District of Columbia that already have marriage equality.
Repealing Proposition 8 or DOMA, or both, would be a huge step forward for equality for gays and lesbians. However, neither outcome would provide the freedom to marry to Oregon couples. Oregon’s Constitution specifically blocks gays and lesbians from marrying. Since the legislature cannot amend the constitution on its own, and Oregon courts have declined to take up this case, the only path to the freedom to marry in Oregon is through a vote of the people. The next regularly-scheduled general election is 2014.
“We are confident that Oregon will be the first state to vote out a constitutional amendment limiting the freedom to marry,” said Frazzini. “We are working every day to build support through heart-felt conversations with Oregonians about why marriage matters, because no one wants to be told it’s illegal to marry the person they love.”
Category: News: Marriage Equality