Thursday, July 3, 2008

Arizona's Marriage Law Challenged: By Mark R. Kerr

In 2003, Tod Alan Keltner and Donald Standhardt filed suit to challenge Arizona's Defense of Marriage Act law that was on the books prohibiting same-sex marriage.

An Arizona appellate court upheld the constitutionality of the state ban on same sex marriage. "Although many traditional views of homosexuality have been recast over time in our state and nation, the choice to marry a same-sex partner has not taken sufficient root to achieve constitutional protection as a fundamental right," wrote Judge Ann A. Scott Timmer for the three-judge panel.

Keltner, Standhardt and their lawyer Michael Ryan appealed the decision to the Arizona Supreme Court and on May 25, 2004, the Arizona Supreme Court declined to review the case.

So what does the Center for Arizona Policy and one of its offshoots, the Alliance Defense Fund say about all this, especially in lieu of the California court ruling which affect California only since it was just a state law in question

"I think we're going to see a lot of creative lawyers with a lot of creative litigants figuring out challenges," said Cathi Herrod, Center for Arizona Policy president, who said in an interview with the Arizona Republic for a June 5, 2008 story.

Arizona's 1996 law banning same-sex marriages was upheld the courts, but they didn't decide if out-of-state marriages have to be recognized, said Glen Lavy, Alliance Defense Fund general counsel, in an interview for the same article as Herrod.

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