National Organization for Marriage Asks U.S. Supreme Court To Stay Oregon Same-Sex Marriage Ruling


Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)

"This case is an ugly spectacle of the state refusing to defend the sovereign act of its voters…"
 — John Eastman, NOM’s Chairman —


Washington, D.C. — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) today filed a motion with Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy asking him to stay the imposition of same-sex marriage in Oregon so that the group can pursue its motion to intervene in the case. Judge Michael McShane imposed same-sex marriage in a ruling last week and refused to stay his decision. Justice Kennedy, the Circuit Judge for the Ninth Circuit, could act on NOM’s request on his own or he could refer it to the full court to decide.

“We are asking Justice Kennedy and the U.S. Supreme Court to take the step of staying the decision of Judge McShane so that NOM can pursue its request to intervene in the case in order to mount a defense of the people’s vote for marriage,” said John Eastman, NOM’s chairman and Director of the Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence at The Claremont Institute. “This case is an ugly spectacle of the state refusing to defend the sovereign act of its voters to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman and instead working jointly with the plaintiffs to redefine marriage.”

Oregon joins numerous other states in recent weeks where federal judges have overturned state laws defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman, and instead imposed same-sex marriage. In each of these cases, the court decision has been stayed by the trial judge or an appellate court. The U.S. Supreme Court itself ruled unanimously to stay a decision in Utah that invalidated their state marriage amendment.

“The Supreme Court has made it abundantly clear that it does not want a profound social change such as redefining marriage to be made by trial judges without the Supreme Court itself deciding the issue,” Eastman said. “In Oregon, not only do we have a single trial court judge imposing his own opinion and invalidating the votes of the overwhelming majority of Oregon voters, but the case involves the state Attorney General refusing to even mount a defense of the people’s decision. This should be very troubling to Justice Kennedy."

NOM represents tens of thousands of members including many in Oregon who will suffer particular harm if the ruling is allowed to stand, including a county clerk and several members of the wedding industry who will suffer material harm if the ruling is implemented.

“NOM believes it has a strong legal right to intervene in this case in order to mount a defense of Oregon’s marriage amendment. We are hopeful that the Supreme Court will allow us to defend the decision of Oregon’s electorate to define marriage as one man and one woman,” Eastman concluded.


To schedule an interview with John Eastman, chairman of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray,, or Matille Thebolt,, at 703-683-5004

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Copyright 2014