The Supreme Court granted opponents of Virginia gay marriage a stay on Wednesday (Aug. 20), preventing same-sex couples from legally marrying in the commonwealth while the court continues litigation. The Virginia 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had ruled on July 28 to permit gay marriage, a decision that overturned the commonwealth’s gay marriage ban.
The Supreme Court ordered the stay less than 24 hours before homosexual couples in Virginia were to have started applying for marriage licenses.
Most Virginia officials were not shocked by the high court ruling, as the Supreme Court has made the same decision in January for the state of Utah.
Michele McQuigg, the Prince William County clerk of court applied for the stay in Virginia. Her attorney Byron Babione said on her behalf, "The Supreme Court acted wisely in restraining the lower court from implementing a ruling of this magnitude before the high court has a chance to decide the issue.”
The next term for the Supreme Court will begin in October; the high court is expected to make a decision on at least one of the pending gay marriage cases. The three pending gay marriage cases before the Supreme Court are now Virginia, Utah and Oklahoma.
Publication date: August 21, 2014