Utah politicians, organizations express opposition to Amendment Three ruling

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SALT LAKE CITY -- A federal judge ruled Friday that Utah's Amendment Three, which defined marriage as solely between a man and a woman, was unconstitutional.

The Sutherland Institute is a conservative policy think tank in Utah, and spokesman Bill Duncan spoke to FOX 13 News' Gene Kennedy about their opposition to the ruling and their support for traditional marriage.

The Sutherland Institute issued a statement earlier in the day, which reads as follows:

"Although we’re not entirely surprised that this judge disagreed with two-thirds of Utah’s voters about the meaning of marriage, we are deeply disappointed that he elevated his opinion to the status of constitutional law. There is nothing in the United States Constitution that requires the state of Utah to redefine marriage.

The people of Utah were right to support the time-tested understanding of marriage as the union of a husband and wife. They recognize it is not the role of government to promote motherless and fatherless homes for children in order to satisfy adult desires. Children are entitled to a married mother and father, and we hope the appeal will establish the right of the people of Utah to reflect this truth in their laws. Sutherland Institute has full confidence in the appeals process — one federal judge does not get to change history for Utahns.

Meanwhile, Sutherland Institute calls on Utah Governor Gary Herbert to order county clerks to stand down in issuing “marriage” licenses until the appellate process has concluded."

The Utah Attorney General's Office has requested an emergency stay on same-sex marriages while they appeal the decision, and a judge could review the request on Monday.

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert also spoke against the ruling. His office released this statement:

“I am very disappointed an activist federal judge is attempting to override the will of the people of Utah. I am working with my legal counsel and the acting Attorney General to determine the best course to defend traditional marriage within the borders of Utah.”

Poll: Should same-sex marriages continue in Utah?

Related story: Judge strikes down state's ban on same-sex marriage, Utahns react.

7 comments

  • Randall

    Although we’re not entirely surprised that this judge disagreed with two-thirds of Utah’s voters (who should apparently have to right to vote on the rights of others. Unequally) about the meaning of marriage, we are deeply disappointed that he elevated his opinion ( his interpretation of the law as a Judge) to the status of constitutional law ( As a Judge). There is nothing in the United States Constitution that requires the state of Utah to redefine marriage.( Or define it in the first place. )

    The Sutherland Institute is the biggest joke. I love everything they say, it’s always very comical.

    The Judge was also placed by a Republican…
    Give us all a break and close up shop…

  • Wayne Peterson

    I am pleased that the state of Utah is being suckered into an appeal of this carefully crafted opinion. This case presents purely Federal Constitutional issues of Due Process and Equal Protection……EXACTLY the case which Justice Kennedy and his Windsor majority have been waiting for….and EXACTLY the “other shoe” which dissenting Justice Scalia feared would drop. The SCOTUS will have no difficulty affirming that marriage is a fundamental right (see Loving v Virginia) which was violated by the mob-rule state constitutional amendment of Utah. It will declare all similar state mob rule amendments violative of the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the US Constitution and cast them all upon the dung heap of discrimination…exactly where they belong!

  • Christopher N

    I believe the judge had the correct opinion. It is the Federal Courts that rule on issues of constitutionality, and the verdicts from the lower federal courts are either affirmed or overturned by superior federal courts to become law and interpretations of the Federal Constitution. Finding that amendment 3 had an adverse effect on a minority group by denying that group (the minorities) benefits that are granted to another group (the majority) is one interpretation of equal protection. I think that it will go through the federal court system and some time in the not-to-distant future see itself in the US Supreme court, and then they (the Supreme Court judges) will have to decide if the defining of marriage is indeed allowed by the constitution. I have a feeling that were marriage is now more a federal issue with property, healthcare, and social security, that it will become a federal definition and out of the states hands.

  • Stormin

    I have nothing against the gays but this country is clearly not ran by the will of the people but a dictator. Already Obummar is constantly going against the laws with the revelations of the NSA, by continuing to encourage illegal criminals to come here and changing health care or any other law (by presidential orders) whenever he wants to change it. Stock up guns and ammo with your year supply because we are headed for a revolution —– when our whole economic and government systems collapses!

  • need for equality for all

    “Although we’re not entirely surprised that this judge disagreed with two-thirds of Utah’s voters about the meaning of marriage, we are deeply disappointed that he elevated his opinion to the status of constitutional law. There is nothing in the United States Constitution that requires the state of Utah to redefine marriage.”

    Hello! It’s called separation of church and state! There are single families all over the state, there are people that are unable to have children, like myself, who are heterosexual. This state heeds to put their religious views aside and look at what is best for everyone! This ruling won’t effect marriages because it’s just a choosing of being with another for the rest of their lives. When the racial segregation was destoed, the state/nation didn’t all become black or marry into other races, it gave the people the RIGHT to marry who they love! This is not any different. The government should NOT have the right to control our preference of marriage!

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