Game Over: Liberty Counsel Files Brief Arguing Passage of Oregon Marriage Amendment Moots Challenge to Marriage Laws

Nov 16, 2004

Salem, Oregon - Today Liberty Counsel filed a supplemental amicus brief with the Oregon Supreme Court after the passage of Oregon's Marriage Amendment to the state's constitution rendered a legal challenge to Oregon's marriage laws moot. Liberty Counsel originally contested a state court's ruling that declared Oregon's statute, which defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman, unconstitutional. However, after the passage of the Oregon Marriage Amendment on November 2, the Oregon Supreme Court requested supplemental briefing to address whether the pending challenge to the marriage law is moot. Liberty Counsel's supplemental brief argues that the challenge to the marriage laws should be dismissed because the constitutional amendment has rendered the action moot.

Earlier this year the ACLU filed suit challenging Oregon's marriage laws, which define marriage as one man and one woman. Within a month of the suit being filed, a state judge ruled that the state marriage laws are unconstitutional, and the case went directly to the Oregon Supreme Court. The Supreme Court accepted briefs in the case, but now that the people of Oregon voted to preserve marriage as between one man and one woman, the case may be laid to rest.

Mathew D. Staver, President and General Counsel of Liberty Counsel, stated, "The people of Oregon have spoken loud and clear that marriage should be between one man and one woman. The passage of the marriage amendment defines marriage as one man and one woman. The argument that the Oregon constitution allows for same-sex marriage is absolutely ridiculous - and, more importantly, that argument is contrary to the will of the people of Oregon." Staver further commented, "Liberty Counsel will fight to make sure that the voice of the people in Oregon is heard and not stifled by liberal activists bent on discounting the voice of the people who overwhelmingly favor traditional marriage."

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