Washington, DC –Today, the Supreme Court agreed to review a federal appeals court decision that upheld natural marriage laws in Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, and Tennessee. Liberty Counsel filed an amicus brief at the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals on behalf of the American Family Association of Michigan, which was one of the coauthors of the Michigan marriage amendment.
In the ruling affirming natural marriage laws, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals based its decision on Baker v. Nelson, stating that it was still good law. In the Baker decision, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that a law defining marriage as one man and one woman did not violate the U.S. Constitution, the United States Supreme Court ruled that there was no federal question, and Baker became precedent.
The Supreme Court has upheld marriage as a foundational social institution that is necessarily defined as the union of one man and one woman:
- Marriage is “fundamental to the very existence and survival of the race.” Skinner v. Oklahoma, 316 U.S. 535, 541 (1942).
- “An institution in the maintenance of which in its purity the public is deeply interested, for it is the foundation of the family and of society, without which there would be neither civilization nor progress.” Maynard v. Hill, 125 U. S. 190 (1888).
“Marriage is not merely a creation of any one civilization or its statutes, but is an institution older than the Constitution and, indeed, older than any laws of any nation. Marriage is a natural bond that society or religion can only ‘solemnize,’” said Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel.
Liberty Counsel is an international nonprofit, litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family since 1989, by providing pro bono assistance and representation on these and related topics.
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