Advancing Religious Liberty
10/4/12 at 02:32 PM 0 Comments

Crucial Marriage Cases Coming Up for High Court Consideration

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Author: Alliance Defending Freedom President, CEO, and General Counsel Alan Sears

Those who closely follow proceedings at the U.S. Supreme Court are telling us there’s an excellent chance that at least two crucial cases involving the definition of marriage – cases with the potential to greatly impact the lives of you, your children, and the future of religious freedom in America – will be reviewed by the Court during the new term that began this week.

The first is a combined appeal of two U.S. Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit rulings in two similar cases: Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Gill v. Office of Personnel Management. Both involve challenges to the 1996 Federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The 1st Circuit decided that the portion of DOMA that defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman is unconstitutional – the first U.S. appeals court to make such an astounding ruling. Alliance Defending Freedom has filed an amicus brief in the case.

“Society should protect and strengthen marriage, not undermine it,” says Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel, Austin R. Nimocks. “DOMA provides that type of protection, and we trust the U.S. Supreme Court will reverse the 1st Circuit’s erroneous decisions.” And as DOMA is being attacked in 20 different lawsuits filed all across the country, Alliance Defending Freedom will defend DOMA in all of those cases.

Which brings up the other major case the high court is expected to review: Hollingsworth v. Perry (formerly Perry v. Brown), on which Alliance Defending Freedom serves as co-counsel, defending the California marriage amendment – Proposition 8. Proposition 8 was enacted in 2008 by more than seven million voters, yet a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit found it unconstitutional; the full 9th Circuit declined to review that decision. Our attorneys, with our allies at, then appealed the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court.

“Marriage is a universal good that has been honored by diverse cultures and faiths for the entire history of Western Civilization,” says Alliance Defending Freedom Legal Counsel, Jim Campbell. “The legal team looks forward to standing before the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the people’s right to preserve this fundamental building block of civilization. The democratic process and the most important human institution – marriage – shouldn’t be overthrown based on the demands of Hollywood activists.”

“The U.S. Supreme Court has made it very clear that the age-old definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman is constitutional as a matter of state public policy,” explains lead counsel Charles J. Cooper, of the Cooper & Kirk law firm. “The lower court decisions essentially rejected all relevant U.S. Supreme Court and appellate court precedent, while attacking the character and judgment of millions of Californians. We are hopeful and confident that the U.S. Supreme Court will grant review and ultimately uphold its precedent and the will of the people.” (That will has more than been made clear: from 1998 through 2012, 32 different states have voted upon the definition of marriage – and in every single case, the people voted to uphold marriage as the union of one man and one woman.)

Not only marriage but the right of people like you in every state to determine the laws you will live by is in grave danger from these legal assaults by those pressing the same-sex “marriage” agenda. Please make both of these cases a matter of urgent prayer – not only that the U.S. Supreme Court will opt to hear and review them, but that their ultimate decision will honor God, as well as our nation’s history and heritage, and accomplish justice on this crucial issue.

This post originally appeared here.

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