Marriage Equality Case Goes Before SCOTUS April 28th

Washington – Today the U.S. Supreme Court has scheduled oral argument for April 28 in consolidated marriage equality cases out of Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and Tennessee.

Many followers of the SCOTUS feel that this  could yield a landmark ruling for gay rights that establishes a 50-state solution to the question of whether same-sex couples have a constitutional right to wed.

Marriage equality advocates have been working toward this moment for years, the last two of which have seen an unprecedented streak of victories in courts of law as well as in the court of public opinion.

Thirty-six states plus the District of Columbia currently allow gay and lesbian couples to legally wed. That number was in the single digits two years ago – the last time the Supreme Court heard arguments on the marriage rights of same-sex couples.

In 2013, SCOTUS punted the constitutionality question now before them in a challenge to California’s former ban on same-sex marriages, known as Proposition 8. The justices ended up tossing the case on procedural grounds. But that same year, the high court did hand down an historic ruling invalidating the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) – a federal law that defined marriage as a union between one man and one woman. The DOMA decision has been cited in numerous federal rulings invalidating same-sex marriage bans across the country.

All of the four same-sex marriage bans before the justices were struck down at the district level, but upheld by the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals – the only federal appeals court to have ruled against marriage equality since DOMA. A decision will likely come at the end of June.

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Jim Williams is the Washington Bureau Chief, Digital Director as well as the Director of Special Projects for Genesis Communications. He is starting his third year as part of the team. This is Williams 40th year in the media business, and in that time he has served in a number of capacities. He is a seven time Emmy Award winning television producer, director, writer and executive. He has developed four regional sports networks, directed over 2,000 live sporting events including basketball, football, baseball hockey, soccer and even polo to name a few sports. Major events include three Olympic Games, two World Cups, two World Series, six NBA Playoffs, four Stanley Cup Playoffs, four NCAA Men’s National Basketball Championship Tournaments (March Madness), two Super Bowl and over a dozen college bowl games. On the entertainment side Williams was involved s and directed over 500 concerts for Showtime, Pay Per View and MTV Networks.