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    Arent Fox Files US Supreme Court Amicus Brief in Same-Sex Marriage Case

    March 16, 2015

    Arent Fox Political Law partner Craig Engle filed an important amicus brief with the US Supreme Court on behalf of the Liberty Education Forum, the non-partisan think tank affiliate of Log Cabin Republicans.

    In April, the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral argument in Obergefell v. Hodges which will decide whether the US Constitution requires that same-sex couples be allowed to marry. The brief makes the brand-new argument that the First Amendment, not just the Fifth, is violated when a state prohibits same sex couples from marrying. Specifically, the marriage prohibition prevents couples who cannot marry from making two contributions in elections — when married couples, as spouses, can make two.

    “A prohibition against same-sex marriage is one of those provably unequal laws: it creates mathematical unconstitutional differences between similar couple’s rights to make political contributions,” said Mr. Engle in a press release issued by Liberty Education Forum.

    “Combining a state’s same-sex marriage prohibitions and its campaign finance laws creates a circular scenario in which same-sex couples face discrimination with regard to their right to marry, but are prevented from equal participation through which they might end that discrimination.”

    A copy of the brief can be found here, and a link to the website of the Liberty Education Forums press release on the matter can be found here.