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READ IT HERE: Plaintiffs’ brief in Wisconsin same-sex marriage case in Seventh Circuit

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The second brief has been filed in the Seventh Circuit challenge to Wisconsin’s same-sex marriage ban. The case will be argued on August 26 along with one from Indiana.

The opening brief can be found here.

Read the plaintiffs’ brief, thanks to Equality Case Files:

14-2526 #92 by Equality Case Files


  • 1. brandall  |  August 12, 2014 at 12:45 pm

    "Virginia Wolf" – Plaintiff. I could connect this to all kinds of interesting or hysterical pro-ME comments, but there are funnier folks than me on this site.

  • 2. hopalongcassidy  |  August 12, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    New motto, "Virginia is for Lycanthropes"?


  • 3. bayareajohn  |  August 12, 2014 at 1:00 pm

    WHO's afraid?

  • 4. ragefirewolf  |  August 12, 2014 at 1:03 pm

    I really like how they smacked down the slightest mention of Baker. I cannot wait until SCOTUS rules in our favor so that Baker is finally given the final nail in the coffin it so rightly deserves.

  • 5. brandall  |  August 12, 2014 at 1:40 pm

    This is a good, succinct brief that builds on other findings from the weekly decisions of the other courts.

    "..the fundamental right to marry has never been defined by the partner chosen. It has been defined by the right to make the choice.…"the fundamental right to choose one’s spouse belongs to the individual.”

    "Defendants further attempt to distinguish Loving, Zablocki, and Turner by arguing that they did not “involve[] a challenge to the fundamental elements of the legal status of marriage as defined under state law,” but instead addressed “certain incidental and peripheral restrictions on who could get married.” Def. Br. 24-25. With respect to Loving, this argument is breathtakingly ahistorical."
    As a reminder, this is the case where Wisconsin tries to separate "positive and negative rights." It was a convoluted argument for Crabb to swallow and it remains so now.

    This is the 2nd brief today where the fun is in the footnote. In essence, the State is fighting ME, but already declared fighting DP’s is unconstitutional [citations omitted]:

    Defendant Van Hollen refused to defend the state’s domestic partnership law, instead stating that he would “concede that the law is unconstitutional and consent to an order enjoining the domestic partnership registry program.” … Defendant Walker moved to withdraw from defense of Wisconsin’s domestic partnership law after determining that “defending [the] law would be contrary to the state’s constitution.”

  • 6. Jen_in_MI  |  August 12, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    I got from that paragraph that they decided the law ESTABLISHING the DP registry was unconstitutional, so they were free to disobligate themselves from defending it in court. How convenient for them – it's apparent that Van Hollen and Walker feel there's no stone they will leave unturned to screw over marriage equality (even the weak sauce second-class DPs) and those icky gheyz.

  • 7. SeattleRobin  |  August 12, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    Yeah, Jen has it right. The state declined to defend the law providing DPs, stating that the DPs are unconstitutional per the state constitution, which has a marriage ban amendment that includes other similar arrangements.

    The interesting thing about that is, NOM is nowhere to be seen to decry how the state officials are neglecting their oath of office in refusing to defend the law. Funny how that works, eh?

  • 8. brandall  |  August 12, 2014 at 5:25 pm

    How about….DP is separate, but equal and is unconstitutional. ME bans are equal rights, but are constitutional. I wonder this if trip-up will elicit comments by the 7th judges.

  • 9. SeattleRobin  |  August 12, 2014 at 11:58 pm

    I'm not following you here. I just finished reading the brief, and the context for mentioning the law providing DPs was that the state is claiming a cautious, incremental approach is a valid rational basis for the marriage ban. Plaintiffs point out in the footnote that the state's own actions bely this, because they refused to defend the DP law. If they truly believed in their incremental approach defense to the ban, then they would have defended the DP law as part of that approach.

  • 10. SeattleRobin  |  August 13, 2014 at 12:08 am

    I thought the plaintiff's brief was excellent, clearly and coherently picking apart every argument from the defense.

    My favorite bit was when the plaintiffs turned the tables and used "redefinition" of marriage against the defense. They said the defense is attempting to narrowly redefine the right to marriage as "a right to procreative marriage".

  • 11. Equality On TrialREAD IT &hellip  |  August 22, 2014 at 10:59 am

    […] The opening brief can be found here. The plaintiffs’ brief can be found here. […]

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