ACLU Asks Supreme Court to Hear Indiana and Wisconsin Marriage Equality Cases

September 9, 2014 12:00 am

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NEW YORK – The American Civil Liberties Union is filing responses today to petitions from Indiana and Wisconsin seeking U.S. Supreme Court review of a federal appellate court ruling last week striking down bans on marriage for same-sex couples in both states. The ACLU, which represents plaintiffs in both cases, has asked the Court to grant review in order to resolve the marriage equality issue for these two states and for the country as a whole.

The ACLU argued on behalf of thirteen plaintiff couples, one widow and two children in cases challenging bans on marriage for same-sex couples in Indiana (Fujii v. Commissioner, one of three cases consolidated under the name Baskin v. Bogan) and Wisconsin (Wolf v. Walker). The ACLU is also co-counsel in Bostic v. Schaeffer, a case challenging Virginia’s marriage ban on behalf of a certified class of approximately 14,000 same-sex couples. Petitions have also been filed from cases in Oklahoma and Utah challenging those states’ marriage bans.

“Now that there are petitions before the Court in five cases, it’s crystal clear that the Court needs to take up the freedom to marry issue again. Same-sex couples from every corner of the country are affected, and the high court has the opportunity to end the harm caused by these discriminatory and unconstitutional marriage bans,” said James Esseks, Director of the ACLU Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender Project. “Since last June, dozens of courts around the country have ruled in favor of equality for loving and committed same-sex couples. With these filings, we hope it’s only a matter of time before all Americans in all fifty states have the freedom to marry.”

The ACLU has been working for the rights of LGBT people since 1936, when it brought its first gay rights case. The ACLU filed the first freedom-to-marry lawsuit for same-sex couples in 1970, represented Edie Windsor in her successful challenge to the federal Defense of Marriage Act in June 2013, and has filed thirteen federal marriage lawsuits on behalf of same-sex couples since then.

For more information on the ACLU’s work to secure marriage equality across the country, visit

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