Same-Sex Marriage: Kentucky Governor Supports Supreme Court Review

Today, Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear, through private counsel, filed his response to the Petition for Writ of Certiorari previously filed by plaintiffs in the same-sex marriage cases of Bourke v. Beshear and Love v. Beshear.

Normally, the party who won the case below will oppose Supreme Court review. However, Governor Beshear agrees with the plaintiffs that the legal questions presented in these cases are of exceptional importance, there is a "split" among the Circuit Courts of Appeal, and the Kentucky cases are good "vehicles" for the Supreme Court to address these issues. These are generally the most important factors the Supreme Court considers when deciding to review a lower court decision.

From Beshear's (rather brief) brief:

The right to same-sex marriage has been recognized in 44 states, plus the District of Columbia. In...33 states, recognition of the right to same-sex marriage has been by judicial declaration. A handful of those decisions have been stayed or, as in the Sixth Circuit, have been reversed on appeal. It is important for Kentucky - and the country -that the Court resolve the important question of who has the right to define marriage for a state, and if the role belongs to the States, then what is the appropriate standard by which the definition will be governed - rational basis, strict scrutiny, or a level in between.