Top Gay Groups Tell Lesbian Couple to Back Down Rather Than Risk Sixth Circuit Rebuke


More evidence that top gay activist groups are worried that their legal case before the Supreme Court is hardly airtight:

... Hoping to avoid a marriage case being heard by the more conservative Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, several organizations fighting for marriage equality — including the American Civil Liberties Union, Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal, and National Center for Lesbian Rights — suggested in a December 2012 filing that the court hold off.

... Although courtroom successes have been plenty in challenges to the Defense of Marriage Act, more direct marriage-rights cases have met with mixed results. Although courts in the Proposition 8 challenge have found the California amendment to be unconstitutional, federal marriage equality lawsuits in Hawaii and Nevada were rejected by trial courts.

... The case, initially filed in January 2012, came only after several LGBT organizations declined to participate, Dana Nessel, one of the couple's attorneys, told BuzzFeed Thursday. "What they told us is that they refuse to touch anything in the Sixth Circuit [Court of Appeals]."

The fear: they would lose.

Jay Kaplan of the ACLU of Michigan told BuzzFeed Friday that Nessel's assessment was accurate, saying, "If you're going to bring a marriage equality claim, you want to be sure that you're going to be successful at all stages of the process." Of the Sixth Circuit, he said, "There is not a progressive majority on the court." (BuzzFeed)