U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments in marriage equality case

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WASHINGTON (ABC 4 Utah) The highest court in the land will settle one of the biggest civil rights issues in our country once and for all.

Justices began hearing arguments for and against same-sex marriage Tuesday morning.

The Utah Pride Center released the following statement Tuesday: 

“As the Supreme Court begins deliberations on the marriage equality case heard before the justices this this morning the Utah Pride Center joins all individuals in the State of Utah and across the country who believe that access to marriage for LGBTQ individuals is a fundamental human right.

Today is an historic moment in the fight for marriage equality and LGBTQ rights in the United States of America. For our community in Utah this will be a defining moment in the life-long work towards equality. It is our belief that very soon marriage equality will become a settled question and the law of the land in the entirety of the United States of America.”

The Utah Attorney General’s Office released the following statement:

“Finally, the Supreme Court of the United States can put to rest the unanswered questions of United States v. Windsor (2012) regarding a state’s power to define marriage in our federal system and whether any state must, in all cases, recognize marriages performed in any other state. Although Utah’s case is not one of the four cases heard, Kitchen v. Herbert was necessary in the national dialogue to resolve unsettled law. We are pleased that the Court has chosen to hear arguments on this historic challenge and to ultimately make it possible for all citizens to have clarity and resolution.”

Senator Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, a member and former Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, issued the following statement on the Supreme Court’s hearing of oral argument on the issue of same-sex marriage in Obergefell v. Hodges:

“The issue of same-sex marriage involves deeply held convictions on all sides of the debate. While I oppose discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, I do not support redefining the fundamental nature of marriage as between a man and a woman. But whatever one’s personal views on the issue, it is clear that nothing in the Constitution requires states to recognize same-sex marriage. This issue—like so many others—is rightly left to the states and the people to decide. The Supreme Court should not invent a new right to same-sex marriage at the expense of the rule of law. Instead, I hope that the Court respects the right of the American people in each state to decide this issue through the democratic process.”

The Sutherland Institute, conservative policy think tank, released the following statement: 

“Sutherland Institute is encouraged that the oral arguments in the U.S. Supreme Court today allowed the Court to hear a robust defense of core principles. First, that marriage is more about connecting mothers, fathers and children than about the government giving a seal of approval to adult choices. Second, that the right of people of the states to determine this consequential issue is fundamental and should not be infringed.

Based solely on the questions asked by the justices, it’s impossible to tell what the final outcome will be. Some justices seemed to endorse the idea that marriage is just a way for adults to express themselves. Others strongly disputed the idea that retaining the virtually universal understanding of marriage is irrational.

One theme emerged strongly in the arguments — ideas matter and when the government endorses the idea that marriage is solely about adult desires, that endorsement will have consequences.

We are pleased that the justices were able to hear strong arguments for marriage. We hope they will have the wisdom to allow the people of states to continue to retain the understanding of marriage that respects children’s entitlement to a married mother and father.”

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