Utah Taking Gay Marriage to Supreme Court

State will appeal directly to highest court

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Jul 9, 2014 3:23 PM CDT

(Newser) – Utah wants an answer once for all about whether it can ban gay marriage, so it's going straight to the Supreme Court. The state's attorney general said today that he plans to appeal last month's federal appeals court ruling that declared the state's ban on same-sex marriage to be unconstitutional, reports the Salt Lake Tribune. Last month's ruling came from a three-judge panel on the 10th Circuit Court, and Attorney General Sean Reyes could have first asked all 12 judges on the federal court to re-examine the decision. Instead, he plans to file an appeal in "the coming weeks" to the Supreme Court "to obtain clarity and resolution from the highest court."

Of course, just because Utah is filing an appeal doesn't necessarily mean the Supreme Court will take the case, or at least do so quickly. While it's a safe bet that the issue will be decided there eventually, the justices may wait for the five other cases currently on the docket in appeals courts around the nation to be decided as well, a law professor tells AP. Still, the respected SCOTUSblog predicts via tweet that the court will agree to hear the case later this year, listen to arguments in March, and issue a decision in June.

Plaintiffs challenging Utah's gay marriage ban Derek Kitchen, right, and partner Moudi Sbeity hug after leaving court in Denver in April.
Plaintiffs challenging Utah's gay marriage ban Derek Kitchen, right, and partner Moudi Sbeity hug after leaving court in Denver in April.   (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)
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