Massachusetts Revisited: Federal Appeals Court to Hear Same-Sex Case

( [email protected] ) Jun 05, 2004 12:00 PM EDT

The First Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments regarding whether to stop same-sex marriage in Massachusetts on Monday, June 7 at 2:30 p.m., according to Liberty Counsel, a pro-family legal counsel involved in 15 of the 17 same-sex lawsuits concerning same-sex marriages.

Although it has been over two weeks since Massachusetts began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, “the battle over same-sex marriage is far from over,” said Mathew Staver, President and General Counsel of Liberty Counsel, who will argue the case Monday. “It is just the beginning.”

Staver will be representing eleven Massachusetts lawmakers and Robert Largess, vice-president of the Catholic Action League in Boston.

“We will argue that the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court violated the U.S. Constitution when it exceeded its power and redefined marriage from the ‘union of one man and one woman’ to the ‘union of two persons’,” said Staver in a statement, but is hoping that federal courts “may restore the balance of power declared by the people.”

After the appeals court ruling, according to Liberty Counsel, either side could ask the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case.

Several other groups are also joining the lawsuit including Citizens for the Preservation of Constitutional Rights, The Thomas More Law Center and the AFA Center for Law & Policy.

Liberty Counsel had filed a brief to the hearing on May 21 to the First Circuit Court of Appeals and has not been slow to act for other same-sex lawsuits. It was the first to file a charge against San Francisco’s Mayor Gavin Newsom for issuing illegal marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

In the long uphill battle, the goal of Liberty Counsel has remained unchanged.

“The circumstances in Massachusetts underscore the need for a federal constitutional amendment to preserve marriage between one man and one woman,” stated Staver.