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Officials ask courts to suspend gay marriage case

Posted: August 6, 2014 - 12:53pm

LITTLE ROCK — Arkansas officials asked a federal judge and the state Supreme Court Wednesday to suspend lawsuits challenging the state's gay marriage ban while a similar case is pending before the nation's highest court.

The attorney general's office filed a motion asking U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker to stay the proceedings in the lawsuit filed by two same-sex couples challenging a 2004 constitutional amendment and earlier state law banning gay marriage. The AG's office later filed a similar motion before the state Supreme Court, which is also weighing the state's ban.

In the filing, the AG's office cited Utah's appeal filed a day earlier with the U.S. Supreme Court asking it to uphold the state's gay marriage ban. A federal appeals court in Denver ruled in June that states cannot deny same-sex couples the fundamental right to marry. The ruling upheld a December decision by a federal judge overturning Utah's ban.

State officials said potential involvement by the U.S. Supreme Court could make the Arkansas case moot.

"Without a stay of these proceedings, the parties and the court will suffer the hardship of unnecessary and unwarranted litigation, and the parties and court could suffer the hardship of a ruling quickly reversed or modified by the United States Supreme Court," the filing said. The state argued the stay wouldn't hurt the Arkansas couples' case since it could still be taken up if justices won't consider the Utah appeal.

If the Supreme Court decides to take the Utah case, it will be the first time the top court considers gay marriage since justices last year struck down part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act. Since that decision, gay marriage advocates have won more than 20 victories in federal courts.

The state later Wednesday morning filed a similar motion before the state Supreme Court, which is also weighing whether to uphold Arkansas' gay marriage ban. A Pulaski County judge earlier this year struck down the state's gay marriage ban, which prompted more than 500 same-sex couples to wed before the ruling was suspended. The motion before the state Supreme Court also asks justices to suspend proceedings while the nation's high court considers Utah's appeal.

Gay marriage is legal in 19 states and the District of Columbia.

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mikeng1994
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mikeng1994 08/06/14 - 01:29 pm
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After this passes, I want it

After this passes, I want it to be allowed to marry a duck. That will make that "old saying" seem more appropriate, and it's always good when a good rhyme just rolls of the tongue.

lachowsj
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lachowsj 08/06/14 - 05:51 pm
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Yeah, Mike

And I don't think gays and lesbians should be allowed to own guns. I mean, it's not like the constitution applies to them.

mikeng1994
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mikeng1994 08/07/14 - 06:23 am
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Well, you see

This is where I get to have my own personal opinion. It's no different than legalizing pot. The law in some states have change to allow it, and that's just fine with me. I do not have to like it.

As with anything else I have an opinion about, if someone doesn't like it, get over it. You have no right to ridicule one's religious beliefs. I am way done with liberals trying to tell my how I have to believe. That won't affect how I treat someone, regardless of who or what you stand for, as a human, I just reserve the right to disagree if I choose to do so.

Besides, there are no catchy rhyming phrases with the word gun.

mikeng1994
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mikeng1994 08/07/14 - 07:53 am
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And

It is wrong and almost criminal to force someone out of their job just because they disagree with the gays. If they say "gays should be shot", then that's not good. If they say being gay is a sin, then that is just an opinion and protected by freedom of speech. It should not be grounds for a public persecution.

If the owner of Chick-fil-a wants to donate money to lobbyists who are against gay views, it really is his right to do so. If you don't like it, don't eat there. The thing is, Gays are not special. They deserve no special rights. No preferred treatment.

lachowsj
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lachowsj 08/07/14 - 08:00 am
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No preferred treatment

Mike, I can look past your comment equating gay humans with ducks. And I can even acknowledge your religious objection to homosexuality as long as you can acknowledge that different people of goodwill can have different beliefs. Most of all, I can agree with the last part of your comment, "Gays are not special. They deserve no special rights. No preferred treatment." Gays are not special. Christians are not special. None of us are special. We just are what we are. You might even say we are all precious in the eyes of the creator.

There have been variations in the basis of the ruling of the several judges who have overturned same sex marriage bans. But the one thing they all seem to have in common is the finding that such laws are a violation of the equal protection clause of the constitution. In other words, gays are not special, they just deserve the same rights as everyone else.

mikeng1994
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mikeng1994 08/07/14 - 08:14 am
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I got no problem with that,

I got no problem with that, equal rights for everyone. Just do not expect me to throw rice at one of their weddings.

InsGuru
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InsGuru 08/07/14 - 09:55 am
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I dunno

Some of you guys are pretty "special"....

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