The U.S. Supreme Court will determine whether or not a stay is justified in Virginia's marriage equality case, Chief Justice John Roberts announced Friday.
This week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit denied a motion to delay its July 28 ruling, which was set to go into effect August 20, striking down Virginia’s ban on same-sex marriage. Therefore same-sex couples can begin marrying in Virginia that day unless the Supreme Court grants an emergency stay of the ruling.
The Alliance Defending Freedom filed a petition Thursday asking the high court to weigh in on the stay, the Washington Blade reports. The Alliance, a right-wing legal group, is representing a Virginia county clerk in defending the ban, as state officials refused to defend it.
“Unless this Court issues the stay requested here and makes clear that the courts of appeals should stay their mandates in these cases, it is likely that other circuits will mistakenly follow the Fourth Circuit’s lead,” the Alliance’s 26-page brief reads in part. “Yet that would invite needless chaos and uncertainty rather than facilitate the orderly and dignified resolution of a constitutional question of enormous national importance.”
Roberts has asked for all information on the case to be filed by Monday, The New Civil Rights Movement reports. The court has granted every request for a stay in same-sex marriage cases since the Windsor ruling in 2013.