Fourteen Republican state attorneys
general have filed an amicus brief in support of Virginia's ban
on gay marriage.
The filing is among the nearly two
dozen friend-of-the-court briefs filed in support of Virginia's
appeal to a district court's February ruling striking down the
state's ban as unconstitutional.
A three-judge panel of the 4th
Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond will hear arguments in the case
In their brief, the states argue that
such bans merely “encourage responsible procreation,” which does
not apply to gay and lesbian couples.
“Civil marriage recognition arises
from the need to protect the only procreative sexual relationship
that exists and to make it more likely that unintended children,
among the weakest members of society, will be cared for,” the
document states. “Rejecting this fundamental rationale
undermines the existence of any legitimate state interest in
The state officials argue that because
the unions of gay couples do not lead to “unintentional
pregnancies” they – and by extension their children – are not
eligible for the protections of marriage.
“[U]nlike opposite-sex couples the
sexual activity of same-sex couples implies no unintended
pregnancies. Whether through surrogacy or reproductive technology,
same-sex couples can become biological parents only by deliberately
choosing to do so, requiring a serious investment of time, attention
and resources. Consequently, same-sex couples do not represent the
same potential for unintended children, and the State does not
necessarily have the same need to provide such parents with the
incentives of marriage.”
Signing onto the document are the
attorneys general of Indiana, Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado,
Idaho, Louisiana, Montana, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South
Dakota, Utah and Wyoming.
(Document provided by Equality