Marriage Equality USA

Stay Informed

Policy and Legal Update - October 21-27, 2013

Marriage Equality USA Projects Manager Ned Flaherty closely monitors marriage equality polls, ballots, laws, and lawsuits nationwide, and keeps the MEUSA website updated with changes in these areas on a near-daily basis. Every Monday we update you via our blog with policy and legal updates covering the preceding week. You may always find the most up-to-date information, including changes that have taken place between these weekly posts, on the Current Policy & Legal Status page on the MEUSA website.

Policy & Legal Updates

October 21 – 27, 2013



  • On 24 October 2013, Harris Interactive surveyed 2,577 adults (representatively chosen by age, sex, race, education, region, income) regarding public attitudes toward LGBT people, and regarding marriage equality 67% say it’s inevitable (34% strongly, 34% somewhat), 25% say it isn’t (11% somewhat, 14% strongly), and 8% declined to answer.  •  Survey Details



NEW JERSEY  •  On 21 October 2013, in Garden State Equality, et al. v. NJ Attorney General Paula Dow, et al., Governor Christie withdrew his appeal of the Superior Court decision to start issuing same-gender civil marriage licenses, and in doing so he removed the last possible obstacle to marriage equality in NJ.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source TENNESSEE  •  On 21 October 2013, in Valerica Tanco, et al. v. TN Governor William Haslam, et al.,four legally married same-gender couples filed suit in U.S. District Court in Nashville, in a constitutional challenge to the TN law that bans recognition of their marriages.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source OHIO  •  On 22 October 2013, in Jim Obergefell & John Arthur v. Ohio, John Arthur passed away, after he and husband Jim Obergefell flew to Maryland, married, and then won a temporary order from a federal judge which forced OH to recognize their out-of-state marriage on Mr. Arthur’s death certificate.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source WEST VIRGINIA  •  On 23 October 2013, in Casie Jo McGee, et al. v. Cabell County Clerk Karen Cole, et al., a challenge to the state law that bans marriage equality, the U.S. District court gave clerks from Kanawha and Cabell counties up to 60 extra days to respond to the suit, so that WV Attorney General Patrick Morrisey can decide whether to intervene.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source WISCONSIN  •  On 23 September 2012, in Julaine Appling, et al., v. WI Governor Scott Walker, et al., 7 WI Supreme Court justices heard arguments, considered altering the existing domestic partner law, and adjourned without a decision, which is expected by summer 2014.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source HAWAII  •  On 25 October 2013, 12 of the first 15 states with marriage equality (CA, CT, DC, DE, IA, MA, MD, ME, NH, NY, VT, WA) plus IL, NM, and OR filed a brief urging the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to strike down gay marriage bans in HI and NV.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source NEVADA  •  On 25 October 2013, 12 of the first 15 states with marriage equality (CA, CT, DC, DE, IA, MA, MD, ME, NH, NY, VT, WA) plus IL, NM, and OR filed a brief urging the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to strike down gay marriage bans in HI and NV.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source


ILLINOIS  •  On 21 October 2013, Fako & Associates surveyed registered likely IL voters on marriage equality, and reported that 52% support it, including 66% of Roman Catholics, 55% of African Americans, and 63% of Latinos.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source HAWAII  •  On 21 October 2013, the Honolulu Civil Beat newspaper surveyed 819 registered HI voters on same-gender civil marriage, and reported that 44% support it, 44% oppose it, and 12% are undecided.  • MEUSA Summary  •  News Source NEW JERSEY  •  Even after the NJ Supreme Court decided to authorize same-gender civil marriages, NJ lawmakers still might revise statutes regarding:  (1) conversion of civil unions into marriages; (2) facility rentals from religious organizations; and (3) recognizing out-of-state marriages in NJ.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source OKLAHOMA  •  On 10 October 2013, the combined Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of western Oklahoma issued their first same-gender civil marriage license to Jason Pickel and Darren Black Bear.  In 2004, such marriages were banned by statute and by constitution in the rest of OK.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source NEW JERSEY  •  On 21 October 2013, Rutgers-Eagleton surveyed 799 registered NJ voters regarding marriage equality, and reported that 61% support it, 27% oppose it, and 12% are unsure.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source


IOWA  •  On 24 October 2013, the nonpartisan Brennan Center for Justice, National Institute on Money in Politics, and Justice at Stake reported that activists spent $833,000 ($466,000 anti-LGBT + $367,000 pro-LGBT) to persuade voters whether to retain an Iowa Supreme Court judge who in 2009 ruled in favor of same-gender civil marriage.  On 6 November 2012, voters retained Justice Wiggins by a 55%-to-45% margin.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source OREGON  •  On 6 November 2013, San Francico non-profit leader Mike Marshall takes over leadership of Oregon United for Marriage.  •  MEUSA Summary  •  News Source
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