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Eagle Forum, ACLU respond to Supreme Court's decision to halt same-sex marriage in Utah

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - The U.S. Supreme Court granted a stay to the State of Utah, allowing the state to immediately stop performing marriages between same-sex couples Monday.
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) - The U.S. Supreme Court granted a stay to the State of Utah, allowing the state to immediately stop performing marriages between same-sex couples Monday.

The Utah Chapter of the Eagle Forum, a conservative leaning political organization, released a statement regarding the stay:
“The Supreme Court sent the message that activist federal judges, such as Judge Shelby, do not have the authority to invalidate state constitutional provisions. Amendments are added to the state constitution by a super-majority of Utah legislators and the voters of Utah jointly and their will should not be set aside so easily by a single appointed judge.”

The Eagle Forum proposed a solution to confusing legal problems that may arise as a result of the same-sex marriages that took place before the U.S. Supreme Court stay was granted:

“Regarding the estimated 900 homosexual marriages that were performed in the state before the stay, they should be summarily invalidated. The legal precedent for this is found in Utah's historical record where polygamous marriages were ruled invalid and men with multiple wives were forced to abandon them, take their families and flee out of the country, or risk imprisonment.”

The ACLU, American Civil Liberties Union, hopes the rationality of the lower court’s decision will be upheld in the end:

"Despite today's decision, we are hopeful that the lower court's well-reasoned decision will be upheld in the end and that courts across the country will continue to recognize that all couples should have the freedom to marry," said Joshua Block, staff attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender Project.

Contrary to the Eagle Forum’s proposal to invalidate all same-sex marriages performed in Utah, the ACLU of Utah believes those same-sex marriages granted by the government should remain valid:

"The huge response that we have seen since the federal court's ruling shows how important the freedom to marry is in the state of Utah," said John Mejia, legal director of the ACLU of Utah. "Though future marriages are on hold for now, the state should recognize as valid those marriages that have already been issued, and those couples should continue to be treated as married by the federal government."

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