Catholic bishops and Mormon leaders
have joined to ask the Supreme Court to uphold state bans on gay
The religious organizations filed an
amicus brief in support of defendants in a case challenging
Utah's ban. Utah officials turned to the Supreme Court after a
federal appeals court struck down its ban as unconstitutional. The
groups asked the high court to hear Utah's marriage case.
Also joining the Church of Jesus Christ
of Latter-day Saints and The United States Conference of Catholic
Bishops (USCCB) in the filing were the Ethics & Religious
Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention and the Lutheran Church
– Missouri Synod.
The groups argued that the high court
should uphold the bans on the basis of tradition and religious
“Legal uncertainty is especially
burdensome for religious organizations and religious believers
increasingly confronted with thorny questions,” the document
states. “Is their right to refrain from participating in,
recognizing or facilitating marriages between persons of the same
sex, contrary to their religious convictions, adequately shielded by
the First Amendment and other legal protections? Or is further
legislation needed to guard religious liberties in these and other
But Utah isn't alone in asking the
Supreme Court to consider its case. The same appeals court which
struck down Utah's restrictive marriage ban also invalidated a
similar ban in Oklahoma. A separate court ruled unconstitutional
Virginia's prohibition. All three of those cases have been appealed
to the Supreme Court. Defendants in cases decided last week striking
down bans in Wisconsin and Indiana are expected to follow suit.
On Monday, challenges from Hawaii,
Nevada and Idaho will be heard by 3 judges from the Ninth Circuit
Court of Appeals in San Francisco.
Circuit announces judge panel to hear gay marriage cases from Nevada,