Marriage Equality USA

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State of Kansas
All in this Region

Current Status

  • The state's Romeo and Juliet law, that assigned harsher sentences in statutory rape cases where the parties were of the same sex, was invalidated by the 2003 SCOTUS ruling in Lawrence v.Texas.
  • Constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage and civil unions from 2005 to 2014, per Proposed Amendment 1.
  • Kansas is the home of the Planting Peace Equality House in Topeka.
  • Kansas House Bill 2453, the Religious Freedom Act, was legislation proposed in the state of Kansas in January 2014 that would have allowed people to refuse to provide services in any way related to any relationship (same-sex or otherwise) under the name "marriage, domestic partnership, civil union or similar arrangement" if their objection to doing so was based on their self-proclaimed religious beliefs. The bill passed the House, but on 19 February 2014, Senator Jeff King (R-Independence), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said his committee would not consider the legislation, ending its consideration.
  • SCOTUS denied cert in Oklahoma's Bishop and Utah's Kitchen on 6 October 2014, which left the 10th Circuit's prior rulings in those cases as valid. Kansas is also covered by the 10th Circuit, therefore binding precedent was established for Kansas.
  • 4 November 2014, U.S. Federal District Judge Daniel Crabtree ruled for marriage equality by granting the plaintiffs'request for a preliminary injunction in Marie v. Moser (under LAWSUITS-PENDING below).
  • 17 November 2014, Kansas has 105 counties, but only a handful are issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples - By Hunter Schwarz, The Washington Post
  • 17 November 2014, Chief Judge A.J. Wachter issued an order covering the 11th Judicial District of Cherokee, Crawford and Labette counties in Kansas - AP, LGBTQNATION
  • 18 November 2014, the Kansas Supreme Court lifted the temporary stay that blocked issuance of marriage licenses in Johnson County. Woot! See State of Kansas v. Moriarty under LAWSUITS-PENDING below.

Legislation - Pending


Legislation - Enacted


NOTE: 10 February 2015, talk about regression! Brownback rescinds executive order that offered protections on basis of sexual orientation - Then-Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, a Democrat, signed order in 2007 - By Jonathan Shorman, The Topeka Capitol Journal/

Lawsuits - Pending

Marie v. Moser

Case #: 14-3246 (10th Circuit); 2:14-cv-02518 (Federal District Court)
Court Level:
10th Circuit Court of Appeals
Date Filed:
10 October 2014
Date of Appeal:
5 November 2014


Michael Nelson, et al. v. KS Department of Revenue

Case #: 13-C1465
Court Level: State Trial Court
Date Filed: 30 December 2013
Date of Appeal:


  • 30 December 2013, two legally married same-sex couples sued for the right to file joint state income tax returns.
  • Kansas filed a motion and memo in support of summary judgment on 2 May 2014.
  • A hearing was scheduled for 11 July 2014.


Lawsuits - Resolved

State of Kansas v. Moriarty

Case #: 112,590
Court Level: 
State Supreme Court
Date Filed: 
10 October 2014
Date of Ruling: 
18 November 2014


  • 8 October 2014, Johnson County District Judge Kevin P. Moriarty issued an administrative order allowing same-sex couples to marry in the county.
  • 10 October 2014, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt asked the Kansas Supreme Court to stop same-sex couples’ marriages in Johnson County.
  • 5 November 2014, the Court ordered the parties to show cause - responses due by 5:00pm on 14 November 2014.
  • 10 November 2014, still waiting for the parties' responses to the order to show cause issued by the State Supreme Court on 5 November 2014. Those responses are due 14 November 2014. In the meantime, Judge Moriarty asked for the temporary stay to be lifted and the state responded.
  • 14 November 2014, Respondents Judge Moriarty and Clerk McCurdy filed their response to the Court's Order to Show Cause.
  • 18 November 2014, the Kansas Supreme Court lifted the temporary stay that blocked issuance of marriage licenses in Johnson County. Woot!

Ballot Initiatives - Pending


Ballot Initiatives - Passed



  • 29 July 2014, results from the latest Bluegrass Poll show 50% of registered voters in Kentucky oppose same-sex marriage, while 37% favor it and 12% remain unsure. That's a drop from the 55% who said they opposed gay marriage in February 2014 and a sharp decline from the 72% that voted in favor of a ban in 2004 — when the state constitution was amended to define marriage as between a man and a woman. News Source
  • 24 February 2014, Public Policy Polling released results of a poll showing only 29% support for a proposed law allowing individuals and businesses to refuse service to same-sex couples. 59% opposed. Opinion still remained divided over same-sex marriage. 44% of voters thought same-sex marriage should be allowed, compared to 48% who thought it should not be. Only 32% of voters rejected both marriage and civil unions and even a majority of Republicans (55%) favored either marriage or civil unions. Poll Details
  • 27 February 2013, Public Policy Polling released results of a poll showing that support for same-sex couples continued to grow in Kansas, with 63% of voters saying they support either marriage or civil union for same-sex couples, and 34% of respondents opposed to any legal family status for gay couples. Poll Details