Southern Utah News Articles
Supreme Court rules same-sex couples can legally marry in 5-4 decision
An historic decision on June 26 by the United States Supreme Court made same-sex marriage legal in all 50 states. The contentious issue has been at the forefront of legal and state’s legislative debate throughout the nation. But even with the close decision, it is now legal in every state for men to marry men and women to marry women.
Here are a few responses from state leaders:
Utah Democratic Party responds to Obergefell v. Hodges
Utah Democratic Party Chairman Peter Corroon issued the following statement in response to the court’s decision:
“This is another historic day. Same-sex couples will now be able to legally marry in all 50 states. Today’s decision acknowledges what Utahns have always known – families come in all shapes and sizes, and each of them is worthy of respect and legal protections. In addition to recognizing the rights of the individual, we also recognize the rights of religious institutions to not be compelled to act against their beliefs.”
“Families will now be able to legally protect their children, visit one another in the hospital, inherit property, and enjoy all the rights that come from legal marriage.”
“With the court’s decision, the legality of marriage equality has been decided, and we encourage all Utahns to continue with civil discourse. Everyone deserves respect, regardless of differing opinions on this emotional subject, and we look forward to embracing all individuals and families regardless of our differences.”
Gov. Herbert statement on U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges
Gov. Gary R. Herbert issued the following statement regarding the Supreme Court ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges:
“Marriage, as defined by the people of Utah, has been redefined, first by the federal courts and today the outcome of that decision has been upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court. I am disappointed with the decision by the court to usurp state authority and overrule the voice of the people of Utah as demonstrated by legislation with regard to marriage. I am also very concerned with the overwhelming trend to diminish state autonomy. I believe states should have the right to determine their own laws regarding marriage. Clearly, the majority of the justices disagree and their decision provides finality with respect to the law.”
Utah Attorney General Sean D. Reyes statement on Supreme Court of the United States ruling Obergefell v. Hodges:
“Throughout this case, the State made its best arguments to allow decisions about the fundamental nature of marriage to be decided through the democratic process and at the state level, avoiding a situation similar to Roe v. Wade from a generation ago. We understand many are thrilled with today’s outcome, and many are equally disappointed. Regardless of one’s opinion of the ruling, the High Court has provided the guidance our office and the citizens of Utah and this nation have sought for several years. Advocacy on both sides helped bring us to this point of resolution. While people of goodwill on all sides of this issue have been at times divided and conflicted, we have an opportunity to come together again as equal citizens of this great state and nation.
After today, some questions remain regarding how this decision affects various individual situations and state agency operations in Utah beyond the specific issues addressed today by the Court. Our legislature, governor and state agencies will need to address these issues to provide greater clarity. In a significant way, they have already begun to draw a balance with legislation respecting religious freedoms and legislative protections for the LGBT Community. Should such freedoms and protections come under constitutional challenge, our office will do its duty and defend them just as we defended Amendment 3 and related laws. This is an important part of the legal process and fulfillment of our oaths.”
Sen. Hatch: “This decision must not infringe on important concerns such as our fundamental right to the free exercise of religion.”
Senator Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, issued the following statement following the Supreme Court’s ruling today on same-sex marriage:
“The issue of same-sex marriage involves deeply held convictions on all sides of the debate. While I oppose discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, I do not support redefining the fundamental nature of marriage as between a man and a woman. But now that the Supreme Court has spoken, I will do everything in my power to ensure that this decision does not infringe on important concerns such as our fundamental right to the free exercise of religion.”
Senator Hatch has played a major role in efforts to protect religious freedom throughout his time in the Senate. In 1993, he co-authored the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which passed in the Senate 97-3 and was signed into law by President Clinton.