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Gay Marriage Can Begin in Kan.: U.S. Supreme Court

By Brett Snider, Esq. on November 12, 2014 3:45 PM

The U.S. Supreme Court has issued an order allowing gay marriage to begin in Kansas, despite attempts to appeal the issue in federal court.

In a one-page order released Wednesday, the High Court noted the emergency stay that was granted by Justice Sonia Sotomayor on Monday was now lifted, meaning the state can no longer continue to enforce its prohibition on same-sex marriage. The initial halt on gay marriage in Kansas came after federal Judge Daniel Crabtree last Wednesday found the state's ban to be unconstitutional.

Now, only a week after Crabtree's ruling, the Supreme Court's terse order has allowed gay marriages to begin. What else does this brief Supreme Court order tell us?

Court Allowed 24 Hours for Arguments

This Supreme Court decision was not made in a vacuum; Justice Sotomayor had given gay marriage opponents and proponents 24 hours to submit arguments about granting or denying a more permanent stay on Judge Crabtree's ruling.

Both gay marriage plaintiffs and Kansas state officials submitted arguments, with Kansas asserting that it is fairly likely that Judge Crabtree's ruling would be overturned. The legal papers make reference to a recent 6th Circuit decision that upheld gay marriage bans in four other states. Kansas is under the jurisdiction of the 10th Circuit, not the 6th Circuit, but the state argued that this recent case made the issue of gay marriage very likely to head to the Supreme Court.

2 Justices Wished to Halt Gay Marriage in Kan.

Whether or not this is true, the Supreme Court apparently wasn't swayed by the urgency of Kansas' arguments, with most of the High Court not wishing to halt gay marriage in the state. Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, however, were noted as wishing to grant a stay in this Kansas gay marriage case.

Supreme Court Denies Stay on Gay Marriage in Kansas by FindLaw

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