[JURIST] Michigan Governor Rick Snyder [official website] said Wednesday that his state will not challenge [press release] a decision [JURIST report] by the US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan [official website] ordering the state to recognize more than 300 same-sex marriages performed in March. The couples wed on March 22, a day after US District Judge Bernard Friedman declared the Michigan ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional. The decision was later reversed [ruling, PDF] by the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit [official website]. The US Supreme Court has granted certiorari [order, PDF] in the case that originally challenged Michigan’s gay marriage ban, likely settling the circuit split created by the Sixth Circuit ruling. In his press release, Snyder stated,
I appreciate that the larger question will be addressed by the U.S. Supreme Court this year. This is an issue that has been divisive across our country. Our nation’s highest court will decide this issue. I know there are strong feelings on both sides of this issue, and it’s vitally important for an expedient resolution that will allow people in Michigan, as well as other states, to move forward together on the other challenges we face.
Same-sex marriage [JURIST backgrounder] continues to be one of the most important topics in the US today. When the Supreme Court agreed last month to rule [JURIST report] on same-sex marriage, it consolidated appeals from Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee after the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit upheld bans [JURIST report] in those states. The court granted one hour and 90 minutes for oral arguments, which will likely be held in April with a decision expected in June. The four consolidated cases are Obergefell v. Hodges, Tanco v. Haslam, DeBoer v. Snyder and Bourke v. Beshear [dockets].