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Utah’s SCOTUS appeal is delayed

Timothy Kincaid

December 26th, 2013

The next step for the State of Utah in their quest to halt same-sex marriages is to appeal to the Supreme Court for a stay on enforcing Judge Richard Shelby’s ruling overturning the state’s constitutional amendment banning marriage equality. But while I expected that to happen immediately this morning, it seems that there will be a delay. (fox13)

A spokesman for the Utah Attorney General’s Office told FOX 13 the office is not expected to file an emergency request with the U.S. Supreme Court to halt same-sex marriage licenses from being issued “for a few days.”

The state had said Tuesday it would file a request with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, after the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver rejected the request. On Thursday, attorney general’s spokesman Ryan Bruckman said the office was coordinating with outside counsel before proceeding.

Having finally recognized that they are completely inept and that they have bungled every step of the way, the state is now seeking to craft a request that will speak to the concerns of the Supreme Court justices.

But after a week of equality and a thousand marriages, getting a stay may be increasingly difficult with each day that passes.



December 26th, 2013 | LINK

As someone else said on another blog, if the Attorney General’s office chooses to take a few more days to get ready before even applying for a stay from SCOTUS, it sort of contradicts the very basis of their application, their claim that there actually is a genuine “emergency.”

Mark F.
December 26th, 2013 | LINK

I think that if they get their act together, they have a decent chance of getting their stay from SCOTUS.

December 26th, 2013 | LINK

What are they up to? Surely even they know that voluntarily delaying is not exactly going to make any justice more disposed to claims of an emergency, so what’s going on?

December 27th, 2013 | LINK

I am not a lawyer, but I understand from the comments at Equality on Trial that the standard to get a stay from SCOTUS on this case is different from and higher than at the Court of Appeal. According to some commentators there, Utah would need to show that the Tenth Circuit had abused its discretion by not granting a stay.

December 27th, 2013 | LINK

I too am not a lawyer, but my guess is that the “outside counsel” who they are consulting would be those from the AGs offices of the other 10th Circuit States who will be strongly affected by whatever eventually takes place at the 10th Circuit – in that case the State of Utah is wise to go slow – the AGs of the other states are probably begging them to craft their appeal very, very carefully!

December 27th, 2013 | LINK

If Utah indeed has to argue that the two 10th Circuit judges abused their discretion, that puts Utah in a very delicate position since it is that very court that they will have to face to argue their appeal on the merits.

December 31st, 2013 | LINK

This tidbit of news:

Monte N. Stewart, a Boise attorney and founding president of the Utah-based Marriage Law Foundation, has helped the state craft its legal theory so far and will be the attorney of record on the stay application

— SLTrib Dec. 31, 2013

So, we have another BYU alum!

I’m not surprised. But being part of the MLF makes it less of a Church and State conflict?

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