Utah Officials Delay Marriage Appeal To Supreme Court, While All Counties Now Issue Licenses

Utah WedingUtah officials keep looking for ways to roll back marriage equality in their state, but time is not cooperating with them. The state attorney general’s office had originally said it was going to ask the Supreme Court Thursday for a stay of the Dec. 19 federal court ruling allowing same-sex marriages. Now it’s pushing back its targeted deadline “for a few days” so it can seek advice from outside lawyers.

The problem for the state is two-fold. First, the appeal to the Supreme Court is a last-ditch effort that doesn’t seem likely to succeed. On Christmas Eve, a federal appeals court rejected the state’s request to halt the weddings. With two federal rulings against the state, it’s hard to see why the Supreme Court would want to intervene, particularly so soon after its marriage equality decision.

In the meantime, complicating the state’s effort is the sheer number of newly married couples. Hundreds of weddings are taking place, which the state will have to nullify if it does somehow get the ruling overturned. As a sign that even the most conservative parts of Utah are giving into the inevitable, the four counties that were holding out announced on Thursday that it would begin issuing marriage licenses to any applicants, meaning marriage equality is in effect for the entire state.

It could be spring before the issue is finally resolved. But the longer state officials have to drag out their appeal, the more difficult their task becomes. Time is on the side of marriage equality–even in Utah.

Photo credit: Freedom to Marry

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  • Taliaferro

    This should start an avalanche of states having their draconian and inhumane anti- marriage equality challenged and revoked and then soon, we can be married in any state of the U.S. and more importantly have our unions recognized in all states! Who would have thought this could happen in Utah?

  • sanfranca1


  • Dakotahgeo

    This is what I thought would happen. It couldn’t happen to a more deserving State! By the time the State profit… errr, I mean prophets/legal eagles get around to doing something, nobody will be in the least bit phased by Marriage Equality. Karma is indeed a mean mutha!

  • Deepdow

    I can believe this from a state whose majority inhabitants believe in a prophet who found golden plates buried in upstate New York (that’s gay).

  • Joetx

    “With two federal rulings against the state, it’s hard to see why the Supreme Court would want to intervene…”

    Don’t count your chickens before they’ve hatched. I wouldn’t put it past the current Supreme Court to intervene & put a stop to things.

  • Cam

    As I understand it, counties that process like 5 applications a day are having to deal with hundreds a day now.

    If this goes to the Supreme Court and is upheld it could knock down all similar laws. Poetic Justice if it’s UTAH that brings down all anti-gay marriage laws nationwide.

  • tricky ricky

    I can’t wait until the trial this coming February in Michigan. the state is using the same “evidence” Utah did. the judge seems totally willing to rule against the marriage ban. he turned an adoption case into a gay marriage case.

  • tricky ricky

    Utah made over $49,000.00 in marriage licenses in a week due to gays getting married

  • viveutvivas

    That couple is cute. Suddenly I feel so lonely.

  • gay4liberty

    I hope Louisiana is next, just to piss off the Duck Dynasty Klan.

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