Federal appeals court denies emergency request to delay Utah same-sex marriage ruling

By George Chidi
Sunday, December 22, 2013 19:25 EDT
google plus icon
Same sex couple beach wedding via Shutterstock.com
  • Print Friendly and PDF
  • Email this page

A federal court in Utah Sunday evening denied an emergency motion by Utah state officials seeking to delay implementation of Friday’s stunning same-sex marriage ruling, paving the way for gay and lesbian couples to line up at county clerks Monday morning for marriage licenses.

Utah Governor Gary Herbert, attorney general John Swallow and Salt Lake County clerk of court Sherrie Swenson filed an appeal to stay the ruling of U.S. District Judge Robert J. Shelby, who struck down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage in a shock ruling Friday. Judge Shelby declined to stay his decision on the court’s own accord and would not entertain an oral motion to postpone the implementation of the ruling on Friday. State officials hoped the appeals court would grant them an emergency stay until Shelby could rule on a written motion.

However, two appeals court judges from the 10th Circuit Court did not find their argument compelling.

“Defendants-Appellants acknowledge that they have not addressed, let alone satisfied, the factors that must be established to be entitled to a stay pending appeal,” wrote 10th Circuit Court judges Jerome A. Holmes and Robert E. Bacharach. “They state that they do not address the 10th Cir. R. 8.1 criteria because they do not seek a stay pending appeal, but rather a stay pending the district court’s decision on their stay motion. But the appellate and local rules contemplate only a motion for stay pending appeal, and the requirements are clear. Because the motion before us does not meet the requirements of the Federal or local appellate rules governing a request for a stay, we deny the motion.”

By commenting, you agree to our terms of service
and to abide by our commenting policy.