Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Tuesday
said a split among appeals courts would likely determine when the
Supreme Court will take up the issue of state gay marriage bans.
Speaking 90 minutes to a University of
Minnesota Law School audience, Ginsburg said the appeals court to
watch is the Sixth Circuit, which is expected soon to rule on legal
challenges to bans in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee.
While three appeals courts have already
upheld lower court rulings invalidating bans in Oklahoma, Utah,
Virginia, Indiana and Wisconsin and the Ninth Circuit is widely
believed to follow suit in cases from Nevada, Hawaii and Idaho, the
Sixth Circuit has signaled it might uphold such bans.
Ginsburg said “there will be some
urgency” if the Sixth Circuit splits off on its own.
There is “no need for us to rush,”
she added, if the judges fall in line with other rulings.
Ginsburg also remarked on
increasing support for gay rights.
“Having people close to us who say
who they are – that made the attitude change in this country,”
Bader Ginsburg to officiate fourth same-sex marriage.)