Gender and the Law Prof Blog

Editor: Tracy A. Thomas
University of Akron School of Law

Monday, June 22, 2015

Obergefell v. Hodges

The Supreme Court will soon announce its decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, the gay marriage case.  

SCOTUS Blog has covered some aspects of the case.  

And reflections from the New Yorker: 

"What  does it feel like to have changed the world?” As the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage approaches, many long-time gay-rights advocates tell me that they are being asked this question. It speaks to more than Obergefell v. Hodges, the case before the Court, or even gay marriage, but to the dramatic increase in acceptance that L.G.B.T. people are experiencing. Take, for example, Ireland’s vote for marriage equality and Caitlyn Jenner’s warmly received coming out. Last month, a Gallup poll showed that sixty per cent of Americans agree that marriage between same-sex couples should be recognized as valid. That number is the highest it’s been in the nineteen years that Gallup has been asking the question."

And (I am responsible for the text in bold relief):  

Other polling shows that almost two-thirds of Americans expect the Supreme Court to legalize same-sex marriage nationwide with its Obergefell ruling. (It is already legal in thirty-seven states.) Most Supreme Court experts agree, and even conservative strategists don’t really want the legal chaos and social backlash that a ruling that rolls back gay marriage could bring. Having the gay-marriage battle continue “isn’t necessarily helpful for Republican candidates who are trying to appeal to a wider section of voters than just social conservatives,” Ron Bonjean, once an aide to former Senator Majority Leader Trent Lott, of Mississippi,” told Bloomberg Politics last week.

To be sure, there has been an effort by some conservatives to oppose the Court's recognition of gay marriage, but the effort is couched in language that is conspicuously removed from the rhetoric of morality, a seeming concession, in its own way, to the validity of gay rights in the abstract.

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