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Mon Dec 23, 2013, 02:09 PM

What is the scope of the Utah decision?

If Utah can't demonstrate that opposite-sex marriage is harmed in any way by same-sex marriage, how can any of the other states where it's banned do the same thing?

Or in plain language, did some legislatin'-from-the-bench judge in Utah legalize gay marriage nationwide? Which would be bad if he did because...umm...well...you know...gee, ah, I'll be sure to think of somethin' in just a second...oh yeah...all dem dar homersexuals'll git divorced and no proper Deuteronomy 22.28* marriage ended in divorce.

*Deuteronomy 22.28 is the passage that allows you to rape any virgin who's not already engaged then atone for it by marrying your victim. Which is a shitty way to find a wife, but everything in the Bible is good, right?

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Arrow 12 replies Author Time Post
Reply What is the scope of the Utah decision? (Original post)
jmowreader Dec 2013 OP
Swede Atlanta Dec 2013 #1
jberryhill Dec 2013 #2
Motown_Johnny Dec 2013 #3
jberryhill Dec 2013 #4
Motown_Johnny Dec 2013 #5
jberryhill Dec 2013 #6
Motown_Johnny Dec 2013 #7
jberryhill Dec 2013 #8
Motown_Johnny Dec 2013 #9
jberryhill Dec 2013 #10
Motown_Johnny Dec 2013 #11
jmowreader Dec 2013 #12

Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 02:21 PM

1. No, this is not a "broad" decision regarding state laws against same-gender marriage.

 

The ruling is narrowly focused, as it should be at this level, to the issues presented at trial regarding Utah's addition to Title 30, Chapter 1, Section 2 of the Utah Code (Marriages Prohibited and Void) that prohibits marriage between two persons of the same gender.

In our system trial court decisions, such as this one, are limited to the issues of law presented in the case. Here the only question was regarding the addition to Utah code to prohibit same-gender marriage.

Upon appeal a Circuit Court could issue a decision in the case that is broader and would affect all of the state in the Circuit.

Only the SCOTUS can resolve discrepancies between Circuits or to decide a matter outright.

The decision is limited to Utah but the decision can be used by other courts, especially Circuit Courts, as informative to their own rulings.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 02:29 PM

2. It is the law in that judicial district

i.e. the state of Utah.

If the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals agrees with him, then it is valid within Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah and Wyoming. Arguably, as it is a ruling on a provision of the Utah state constitution, then different challenges would be required in the relevant districts of those states to whatever statute or constitutional provision is effective in those states. However, the statutory and/or constitutional provisions of those states are likely not materially different from the Utah state constitutional provision at issue in this case.

At the 10th Circuit, it will be considered initially by a three-judge panel. It is likely that either party will then file a motion for review of that decision by the entire roster of the 10th Circuit, to put it in better form for appeal to the Supreme Court.

One contrast with, say, Loving v. Virginia, which over-turned anti-miscegenation laws in 1967 is that, by the time the court ruled on that case, such laws had been overturned in a majority of states, with 19 states remaining in which interracial marriage was not recognized.

At the time of Roe v. Wade, abortion was categorically illegal in 30 states and subject to substantially narrow limitations in 16, and generally legal in only 4.

So if the court goes by a "which way is the wind blowing" sense, this Utah decision is somewhere in between the two, in that marriage equality has been a consequence of legislation or referendum in some states, and a consequence of a judicial decision in some others, for a total of 17, not counting Utah which is the subject of the decision here.

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Response to jmowreader (Original post)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 02:42 PM

3. I think it is larger than the previous 2 posts state.

 


This is a Federal decision, based on a SCOTUS ruling, which overturns a State's ability to outlaw same sex marriage by amending it's constitution.

There are ~30 states with something in their constitution outlawing same sex marriage.


Once this ruling is upheld, it will be the precedent for overturning every state law banning same sex marriage.



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Response to Motown_Johnny (Reply #3)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 02:58 PM

4. "Once this ruling is upheld"


That wasn't the question in the OP.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #4)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 03:31 PM

5. I am simply acknowledging that this isn't a done deal.

 


There is always an appeals process. To ignore that process would be foolish.


I believe it will be upheld because it is based on the repeal of DOMA case recently ruled on by SCOTUS.

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Response to Motown_Johnny (Reply #5)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 03:51 PM

6. Yes


The question "What is the scope of the Utah decision?" accompanied by whether it legalized same sex marriage nationwide, seemed to be directed to what is the geographical extent of the decision in the present tense.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #6)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 03:55 PM

7. I see no implication of geographical limitations in the OP

 

The first line is

If Utah can't demonstrate that opposite-sex marriage is harmed in any way by same-sex marriage, how can any of the other states where it's banned do the same thing?



It asks about other states where it is banned. Not about other states in the area.



Edit to add: The next line asks about a nationwide effect of the ruling. (Just saying)


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Response to Motown_Johnny (Reply #7)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 03:56 PM

8. Correct

And the direct and current answer to this question is that they can do the same thing because this decision is not binding on any other state.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #8)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 03:59 PM

9. I said it could be the precedent for future decisions (paraphrased)

 


and I believe that to be true.


Once this is upheld, the same type of suit can be brought in other Federal courts against the other states with similar laws.

This decision will be the precedent and most likely will simply be repeated in those future lawsuits.



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Response to Motown_Johnny (Reply #9)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 04:07 PM

10. Is there something you think we disagree about?


Yes, I know what you said.

If it is upheld at the Supreme Court level then, no, the "same type of suit" is not needed in other federal courts, including in those states which have more than one federal district.

Second, no, it will not be "precedent", as it is not itself binding on any other court as precedent. What would be "precedent" would be a 10th Circuit affirmance, as to the other states in the 10th Circuit, or a Supreme Court affirmance, as to all states. To the extent that any federal district court gives a hoot about any other district court decision, that is "persuasive authority", not "precedent".

The question at hand, however, is:

"What is the scope of the Utah decision?" where the word "is" appears to be used in its ordinary sense of indicating a present state of being.

Absolutely, it may have a variety of future consequences, depending on its treatment by other courts, in other decisions. But if we take the question "What is the scope of the Utah decision?" to be seeking an answer which sets for the current legal effect of this decision, then it is binding in the state of Utah.

One could answer that question by also stating that it is preferable to maintain pastry dough in a refrigerated condition right up until the pastry is prepared in order to maximize the flakiness of the crust of the pastry. It is definitely a true and correct statement, but it is not responsive to the actual question asked.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #10)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 04:13 PM

11. We are arguing semantics

 

I am just going to let this die.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #6)

Mon Dec 23, 2013, 05:25 PM

12. Exactly

Does this apply only to Utah, or can precedence be used to declare the laws/constitutional amendments in all the states that have them null and void?

The decision says the Utahns can't prove same-sex marriage harms opposite-sex marriage in any way. If it doesn't harm opposite-sex marriage in Utah, it also doesn't harm it in Idaho, Texas or Florida.

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