Hopes for traditional marriage in Utah? Slim to none, says attorney

Utah is making an emergency appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a federal court decision legalizing homosexual “marriage.”

Last Friday, Federal Judge Robert Shelby ruled unconstitutional Utah’s constitutional amendment that was passed by voters in 2004 to define marriage as one man and one woman. Homosexual couples in the state quickly began obtaining marriage licenses and were married. The state’s appeal goes to Associate Justice Sonya Sotomayor, who can decide the appeal or pass it to the full court.

Attorney Matt Barber, vice president of Liberty Counsel Action, was asked about the prospects for victory.

“Unfortunately, they may not [stand much of a chance] with Sonya Sotomayor taking a look at this first,” he replies. “I imagine Utah’s pleas will fall on deaf ears.

“And now that we have Justice Kennedy operating as the swing vote on marriage, I’m not holding out a whole lot of hope the court is going to intervene, which they should and rein in this renegade judge,” he adds.

Barber points to the ruling this past summer striking down parts of the federal Defense of Marriage Act.

“[Judge] Shelby needs to remember here that Section 2 of DOMA is alive and well,” the attorney points out, “and Section 2 still permits states to determine whether or not the institution of marriage will be radically redefined in their states.”

Barber says Shelby’s ruling “completely ignores that material fact.”

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