Earlier this week, the United States Supreme Court denied appeals from five states that sought to retain their bans on same-sex marriage, which led to some resistance in states like Florida and Nevada. As ABC News notes, “Some states affected by the decisions are going ahead with weddings; some are proceeding toward marriage deliberately; and some are putting up a fight.”
Back in August, a federal judge in Florida struck down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage, a ruling that was later stayed pending appeal. From a legal standpoint, Miami-based lawyer Kendall Coffey recognized the momentum that marriage equality was gaining in Florida at the time, and deemed the movement “unstoppable.” However, after the Supreme Court involvement earlier this week, it appears that the freedom to marry will be paved with more obstacles in Florida.
Reportedly, Florida Governor Rick Scott and Attorney General Pam Bondi have been preventing marriage equality from moving forward. “It’s about time to suck it up and recognize the historical inevitability of equality,” Howard Simon, Executive Director of the ACLU of Florida, told the Miami Herald in a statement aimed at Bondi in particular. According to Gay South Florida, “[Bondi’s] office has unsuccessfully defended the state’s gay marriage ban in at least four state and federal court cases. When asked, Governor Scott is defensive of Bondi’s stance.
“Today’s decision by the Supreme Court leaves in force five favorable marriage rulings reached in three federal appellate courts, ensuring the freedom to marry for millions more Americans around the country,” said Freedom to Marry’s Evan Wolfson after the Supreme Court’s decision to clear way for the immediate expansion of marriage rights on Monday. Despite the historic decision, officials in Florida and other states are holding strong against marriage equality. On Tuesday, the ACLU of Florida filed a motion asking the court to lift the stay on Judge Hinkle’s ruling; the state has 17 days to reply.
For more information about the status of marriage equality in states such as Florida, Utah, Oklahoma, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Wisconsin, visit Gay South Florida’s in-depth coverage of pending marriage equality cases.