The US Supreme Court delays same-sex marriage hearings

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Though LGBT+ activist groups had hoped to hear from the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) on Friday, it now looks as though any news on the federal lawsuit seeking to overthrow Michigan’s same-sex marriage ban will have to wait until Monday. The SCOTUS is currently reviewing a slew of cases involving same-sex marriage from the states of Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio, Louisiana and Tennessee.

All of the marriage cases to come before the Court this term are controversial because they involve states and circuit courts which have upheld bans on same-sex marriage, even if the bans had been previously overturned. Other cases include a challenge to Idaho’s overturned ban on same-sex marriage by Idaho Governor Butch Otter.

Fordham University law school associate professor, Elizabeth Cooper, has stated that she believes the Michigan case will be taken up by the SCOTUS because the actions of the 6th Circuit Court (which previously upheld bans on same-sex marriage) have created a ‘split’ in the question of whether or not bans on same-sex marriage are unconstitutional.

‘Now that two-thirds of the states have gay marriage it would be very hard to see the court turn around and take away that right,’ she said. ‘There’s still a chance they could let the rest of the cases percolate and see what happens.’

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As of 6 January 2015, same-sex marriage is now legal in 36 states and the District of Columbia, with Florida being the most recent state to allow marriages between same-sex couples.