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Report: No Court Action on Gay Marriage

The U.S. Supreme Court took no action on 10 same-sex marriage cases Friday. But could they delve into the cases Monday?

The U.S. Supreme Court will not act on gay marriage, the Wall Street Journal and numerous sources on Twitter are reporting.

After much anticipation, the high court deferred 10 cases related to same-sex marriage on Friday.

The Atlantic magazine shared this update on its website, The Wire:

"The Supreme Court, after taking most of the day to prepare new orders, took no action Friday on the ten same-sex marriage cases now on the docket," reports the SCOTUS blog's Lyle Denniston, who has covered the court for decades

But the issue is not dead. The court could next issue orders at 9:30 a.m. Monday.

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The future of same-sex unions in California could be decided Friday, if the U.S. Supreme Court decides to take up Prop. 8, the ban on gay marriage that voters approved in California four years ago.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals struck down Prop. 8 in February, ruling the law unconstitutional. Prop. 8 supporters then appealed to the country's highest court.

The Los Angeles Times gave this concise summary of Friday's possible outcomes:

If the justices opt not to hear the Proposition 8 case, then a federal appeals court ruling that found the 2008 state ballot measure banning same-sex marriage unconstitutional would stand, clearing the way for marriages to begin. If the justices take up the case, a ruling would not come until next year and gay marriage would remain on hold until then, or longer depending on how the court rules.

Prop. 8 passed with 52 percent of the vote in 2008. Since then, nine states have approved same-sex marriage.

This chronology of the history of gay marriage on the LA Times explains the complex road that has led to today.

Supporters of gay marriage hailed February's favorable appellate court ruling. In its decision, the court stated that banning same-sex marriage "serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gays and lesbians in California and to officially reclassify their relationship and families as inferior to those of opposite-sex couples."

Prop. 8 is one of several same-sex marriage cases that the US Supreme Court could choose to hear. Most of the others challenge the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act.

For all of the cases, the court's decision to not hear arguments would actually do more than putting them on the agenda for next term. Read about those impacts here.

What are your thoughts? Should the appellate court ruling stand and same-sex marriage be allowed? Or was Prop. 8 the right decision to begin with? Tell us in the comment section below.

This story will be updated with the court's decision.

Regular Guy December 01, 2012 at 04:53 AM
Proponents of gay marriage have made a serious strategic area by taking this to court. When these contentious issues are settled democratically, by the legislature or by a vote of the people, they become non-contentious and they stay settled. When a decision is imposed undemocratically by a court, the issue remains contentious for decades. Just ask proponents of abortion rights. If that issue had been settled legislatively, state by state, it would have been all over by 1990. Every major developed country has settled this issue democratically with a compromise that tends to ban abortion only in the third trimester. Only in the US do we have an ongoing debate. This is solely because the court took the decision on itself and went beyond the natural compromise position. Both parties employ the issue to motivate their voters. The parties would not be able to do this if the issue had been compromised democratically. We all know that gay marriage will gain majority public approval in the fairly near term. Why be so impatient as to impose it non-democratically, when that strategy will ensure resentment for decades to come? Why not take a few extra years to win voters' hearts and minds and settle the issue in a way that even the opponents will accept as fair?
Joshua Halloway December 01, 2012 at 06:27 AM
A+ on the trollin'
Joshua Halloway December 01, 2012 at 06:27 AM
@Jennifer Squires: A+ on the biased headline. So much for objective journalism.

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