7th Circuit: Gay marriage bans in Indiana, Wisconsin unconstitutional

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed federal court rulings in Indiana and Wisconsin invalidating the states’ prohibitions of same-sex marriage.

The federal appeals court released one opinion in the Indiana cases Baskin, et al. v. Bogan, et al.; Fujii, et al. v. Commissioner, et al.; and Lee, at al. v. Abbott, et al., 14-2386-14-2388, as well as Wisconsin case Wolf v. Walker, 14-2526. The cases were combined on appeal before the 7th Circuit and argued Aug. 26.

“Our pair of cases is rich in detail but ultimately straight-forward to decide. The challenged laws discriminate against a minority defined by an immutable characteristic, and the only rationale that the states put forth with any conviction – that same-sex couples and their children don’t need marriage because same-sex couples can’t produce children, intended or unintended – is so full of holes that it cannot be taken seriously,” Judge Richard Posner wrote in the 40-page opinion.

The plaintiffs in the cases challenged their respective state’s ban on same-sex marriage. Chief Judge Richard Young in the Southern District of Indiana this summer ruled the state’s marriage statute is unconstitutional, leading to a rush by same-sex couples to get married. The 7th Circuit put a stay on the ruling until it could decide the matter.  


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