A brief in support of Kentucky's gay marriage ban is so outrageous that some are questioning whether the state is purposefully trying to lose the case.

The brief filed May 7 at the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati asserts that the ban is needed to maintain Kentucky's “long-term economic stability through stable birth rates.”

On February 26, U.S. District Judge John G. Heyburn ordered the state to recognize the out-of-state marriages of gay couples.

After Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway declined to defend the state's ban in court, Democratic Governor Steve Beshear hired private lawyers to do the job.

The outlandish claims made in the brief have led some lawyers to speculate that Beshear, who previously was considered a gay rights ally, is attempting to throw the case.

Last year, Beshear vetoed a bill opponents said could be used to challenge local laws which ban discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Sam Marcossen, a constitutional law professor at the University of Louisville, told the Courier-Journal that the state's appeal is “preposterous.”

“Nothing in the Beshear brief explains how allowing same-sex marriage will change how many heterosexual couples get married and have babies, or how many babies they have,” Marcossen said.

Ruthann Robson of the City University of New York called the state's arguments “a rather unique twist.”

Evan Wolfson, a lawyer and founder of Freedom to Marry, added: “The state doesn't show – because it can't – that denying gay people the freedom to marry does anything to promote anyone else's procreation.”

“Gay and non-gay couples marry for a bunch of reasons not related to birthrates and procreation, including love, commitment and proving a strong family setting in which to build a life with a partner and, for many, raise kids,” Wolfson said.