Today’s news that the U.S. Supreme Court will weigh in on the controversial issue of same-sex marriage has prompted a responses from state and federal elected leaders as well as interested groups.
The court’s decision will provide the ultimate ruling on Prop 8, a ban on same-sex marriage that California passed in 2008, as well as the federal Defense of Marriage Act.
Here’s what officials are saying:
“I sincerely hope that the Supreme Court finds that both of these laws – Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act – violate the promise of equal protection guaranteed by the Constitution. I believe support for marriage equality keeps growing stronger nationwide because it is a matter of fairness and justice.” — U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, a Rancho Mirage Democrat
“Same-sex couples live their lives like all married couples. They raise children, share finances, care for each other and love each other in good times and bad. But DOMA denies these couples more than 1,100 federal rights and benefits that other Americans enjoy. I fully expect the court will come to the same conclusion I have—that this is a violation of equal protection and must be struck down.” — U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat who has championed efforts to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act
“With the Supreme Court’s decision, marriage equality will finally have its day in the highest court in the land. Americans will hear whether inequality and discrimination are consistent with the high standards and deepest values of our Constitution. We remain confident that the justices’ ruling will fall on the side of civil rights and discard DOMA and Prop 8 in the dustbin of history. … By taking up the Prop 8 case, the Supreme Court will have the opportunity to make a strong statement that laws, in California and nationwide, must not target the LGBT community unfairly and that families across our state and our country deserve fair and equal treatment under the law. We have now reached a landmark moment in the history of civil rights in our nation. Let’s end discrimination and ensure equality for all of America’s families. Let’s get this over with and on to the future!” — House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, a San Francisco Democrat
“Today’s announcement that the Supreme Court will take up Hollingsworth v. Perry and the challenges to the Defense of Marriage Act is a reminder that the pathway to justice is long and difficult. The plaintiffs in the initial challenge to Proposition 8, Perry v. Schwarzenegger, presented a powerful and compelling argument that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional, which was eloquently recognized in Judge Vaughn Walker’s ruling in that case. I am very confident that the Supreme Court will rule in favor of our community in Hollingsworth v. Perry, as it is now known, and affirm that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. But until that outcome is secured, our community must continue to fight for justice on every front, from working to secure the Employment Non-Discrimination Act to addressing the issues of homelessness among LGBT youth.” — California Assembly Speaker John Perez, the first openly gay man to serve as speaker
“Today’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to consider marriage equality takes our nation one step closer to realizing the American ideal of equal protection under the law for all people. For justice to prevail, Proposition 8 must be invalidated so that gay and lesbian families are finally treated with equality and dignity.” — California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris
“Should the Supreme Court decide to overturn the marriage laws of 41 states, the ruling would become even more divisive than the Court’s infamous Roe v. Wade decision. Marriage, unlike abortion laws in the 1970s, has been incorporated into the state constitutions of 30 states. Voters in these states will not accept an activist court redefining our most fundamental social institution. … Additionally, we believe that the people’s vote on Proposition 8 should be respected. Activist courts like the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit should not overturn their decision. We hope the Supreme Court will recognize the right of the people to uphold marriage as it has always been defined.” — Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, whose group helped draft and enact DOMA