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Cold Feet: What Happens If the Supreme Court Rejects Marriage Equality?

Editor’s Note: This blog post is the second in a series by Americans United’s Legal Department examining possible outcomes in the marriage equality case currently pending before the Supreme Court. This post, written by AU Senior Litigation Counsel Gregory Lipper and AU Law Clerk Kaitlyn Vitale, discusses what will likely happen if the high court rejects marriage equality. Read more

Taking the Plunge: What Happens if the Supreme Court Grants Marriage Equality to LGBT Couples

Editor’s Note: The U.S. Supreme Court’s 2014-15 term is coming to a close, and a landmark ruling on marriage equality is pending. In light of that, “The Wall of Separation” asked AU’s Legal Department to examine the three possible outcomes in this case. In this blog post, Gregory Lipper, senior litigation counsel, and Matthew Russo, an AU legal intern, discuss what will likely happen if the high court extends marriage equality nationwide. Read more

Long Live The Culture Wars: Could Social Issues Dominate In 2016?

Conventional wisdom holds that social issues won’t have much impact on the 2016 presidential election. Americans are more concerned about jobs and the economy, and besides, some recent polls show that Americans are less religious and moving to the left on social issues.

That’s the conventional wisdom. But there’s a problem – conventional wisdom can be, and often is, wrong. Read more

Court Report: Justices Deliberate Marriage Equality

Seats inside the U.S. Supreme Court were at a premium today for the oral argument in Obergefell v. Hodges, the marriage equality case.

I was fortunate to get a spot in the press gallery. I was in the back row, and my view was obstructed by two large columns, but I’m not complaining; I would have been willing to hang from the rafters for this historic argument, a marathon session that featured five attorneys and lasted two and a half hours. Read more

Whine Festival: Second-Tier Religious Right Leaders Still Don’t Like Marriage Equality

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments tomorrow in Obergefell v. Hodges, the marriage equality case.

In preparation for this, a sad collection of Religious Right leaders trooped to the microphone at the National Press Club on Friday to denounce marriage equality – again. Read more

Marriage Matters: Thoughts On The Recent Unpleasantness In Indiana

Last week I taped an interview with Sister Maureen Fielder, host of “Interfaith Voices,” a popular radio program exploring religious issues that is carried by many NPR stations.

The topic of the show was Indiana’s new “religious freedom” law, and appearing with me was Mollie Ziegler Hemingway, senior editor at The Federalist, a libertarian journal. We had a spirited but thoughtful discussion. Read more

Marriage Equality And Religious Freedom Can Co-Exist, Americans United Says

Church-State Watchdog Asks Federal Appeals Court To Reject Claims That Same-Sex Marriage Threatens Religious Liberty

Same-sex couples should not be denied the right to marry because of false claims about the threat marriage equality poses to religious liberty, says Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

Americans United today submitted friend-of-the-court briefs to the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in a group of cases challenging the constitutionality of bans on same-sex marriage in Missouri, South Dakota and Arkansas. Opponents of marriage equality have argued that legalization of these unions will spawn conflicts with religious liberty. Read more

What Roy Has Wrought: Alabama Supreme Court Tries Desperate Tactic To Block Same-Sex Unions

Last night the Alabama Supreme Court issued a ruling ordering an end to same-sex marriages in the state.

This was a very curious action. As you may recall, a federal court earlier this year declared Alabama’s ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional. The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court both declined to stay this ruling. This paved the way for same-sex marriages to begin in Alabama on Feb. 9. Read more

Ala. Chief Justice Urges Defiance Of Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

An infamous Alabama jurist’s pledge of defiance on legalized same-sex marriage has landed him in hot water.

In January, Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore, who lost his job in 2003 over his refusal to remove a Decalogue display from a courthouse, wrote to Gov. Robert Bentley and urged him to continue to deny same-sex couples the right to marry, even though a federal court struck down the state’s ban on such marriages.

In his letter to Bentley, Moore insisted that the state of Alabama is free to ignore rulings by federal courts. Read more