Equality NC Responds to Supreme Court Decision Opening Door for Marriage Equality in North Carolina
RALEIGH, NC (Oct. 6, 2014) – Equality NC, North Carolina’s largest LGBT advocacy organization, responded today to news that the U.S. Supreme Court would deny review of five cases seeking the freedom to marry, leaving in place marriage victories in three federal circuits and opening the door to marriage equality in many parts of the country, including North Carolina.
“Today’s decision by the Supreme Court makes legally binding five favorable marriage rulings reached in three federal appellate courts, including the 4th Circuit, and opens the door for the freedom to marry for millions more Americans across the country and in North Carolina,” said Equality NC’s Executive Director Chris Sgro. “As marriages begin immediately in Indiana, Utah, Oklahoma, Virginia, Wisconsin, and with marriage equality now the law of the land across our 4th Circuit, we look to federal judges in the four cases pending against North Carolina’s ban on the freedom to marry to make a swift and unequivocal ruling in support of marriage equality in the state we call home.”
Equality NC will host a joint press conference with the ACLU of North Carolina on Tuesday, October 7, at 10 a.m., to discuss the impact of today’s Supreme Court decision on cases pending against North Carolina’s ban on the freedom to marry. Details are forthcoming.
With the Supreme Court’s decision not to review the cases, favorable marriage rulings in the 10th Circuit, the 7th Circuit, and the 4th Circuit will soon go into effect. Marriage bans in every state within those circuits will be invalidated, adding Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Utah, Wyoming, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Indiana, and Wisconsin to the list of freedom to marry states. As a result of the Court’s decision, an additional 51 million Americans will live in a freedom to marry.
In total, 41 federal and state courts in the past year have ruled in favor of the freedom to marry for same-sex couples with only one federal and one state ruling going the other way. Five of these marriage wins were before the Supreme Court for possible review.