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Utah AG needs more taxpayer money to defend same-sex marriage ban

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes is hoping for extra help from lawmakers to pay for the state’s legal fight over same-sex marriage.

Reyes said Tuesday that his office is paying an outside legal team now but has limited resources.

Sean Reyes

Sean Reyes

“That money is for our discretion,” Reyes told The Associated Press on Tuesday afternoon. “We’d like to be able to make sure that we have it for other things that arise, too.”

Leaders in Utah’s Republican-controlled Legislature have said they are committed to protecting the state’s constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, as has Gov. Gary Herbert, who is also a Republican.

A federal judge overturned the ban in late December. More than 1,000 gay couples rushed to wed until the U.S. Supreme Court granted Utah’s request to halt the weddings in January.

When Utah appealed the decision to the Denver-based 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, Reyes hired three outside attorneys to help with the state’s case.

They could cost up to $300,000 through the appeals court. If the case works its way to the U.S. Supreme Court, that cost could double, the attorney general’s office has said.

Reyes, a Republican, said the total cost for the special counsel is still uncertain, so he’ll likely ask lawmakers to help pay that cost next year, when he will have a better estimate of the bill.

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He made the comments shortly after making a case to a legislative budget committee that his office needs to hire several full-time attorneys for some of its usual operations in order to offset heavy workloads.

The same-sex marriage case did not come up during the committee’s hearing Tuesday, but lawmakers on the Executive Offices and Criminal Justice Appropriations Subcommittee have been briefed on the potential costs.

Kearns Republican Rep. Eric Hutchings, the committee’s chairman, said after the meeting that lawmakers intend to put money toward the legal cos ts this year and pay the balance next year.

Democratic Rep. Jennifer Seelig of Salt Lake City, who serves as the House Minority Leader, said Tuesday that members of her caucus have not taken a position on the spending.

“I don’t believe that we should be pursuing that, personally,” she said. “I would not be in support of any extra money for that.”

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126 more reader comments:

  1. Fuck that

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:00pm
  2. What a dick. Just goes to show you are what you eat.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:00pm
  3. helloo

    Replied on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 10:27am
  4. come on

    Replied on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 11:23am
  5. come on

    Replied on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 11:23am
  6. Spend..spend..spend!!! …and you’re still gonna lose!!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:00pm
  7. spend, spend, spend. LOL, only when they want to spend it for worthless, mindless causes.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:02pm
  8. WOW, really???!!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:02pm
  9. Fuck you your not getting a dime. You should be sued for using money from the budget that we did not ask you to spend!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:02pm
  10. What happened to us telling them what to do? Instead of us telling the gov what to do with our votes it seems the other way around.

    Replied on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:28am
  11. Sounds like a good time to stop while they are still losing

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:02pm
  12. Shame on him

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:03pm
  13. GO broke trying to fight gay rights LOL

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:03pm
  14. Ask the Mormon Church for the money! They love playing politics!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:03pm
  15. Just ask the Kock Brothers

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:03pm
  16. Our government is fucked. Why not spend it on the things that are needed. Like school lunches, duh.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:03pm
  17. Spend $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ the Bankrupt Utah. Heck, get the money from the MORONS, oops, MORMONS since they are pushing this. Then, it goes to USSC and it’s ruled UNCONSTITUTIONAL. So spend away!!!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:05pm
  18. I hope none of them give you any money

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:05pm
  19. Perhaps he should ask for funds from the citizens that support his cause instead of from all tax payers. Let the bigots pay for the defense.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:05pm
  20. Waste of money.. Communist that want to people how to live

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:05pm
  21. They need more money, that was the plan to start with. the plan was to waste tax payers money on a frivolous law suit

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:05pm
  22. Just like the last AG if be willing to bet there are some “back door” deals going on and this money is being spent in illegal ways after all Utah has already proven time and time again they will lie cheat and steal to get what they want. Utah lied and bribed to get the Olympics. Utahs last AG lied the whole time in office and spent money and gave bribes. Even the current Gov was caught in a scandal for giving a contract to someone who lost the bid for it, rather then doing the right thing he just paid both parties. So ya Utah is a back water hate filled crap hole

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:05pm
  23. The LDS church showed they were good for it in CA- let THEM pay for it.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:06pm
  24. Glenn is the only guy here secure in his sexuality that the gay issue doesn’t faze him a bit! Right on brother!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:07pm
  25. Looks like shit ain’t looking good for him lol

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:08pm
  26. Make that state go broke!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:08pm
  27. How about this money to help the poor? Senior programs? The unemployed?

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:10pm
  28. Anyone know when these cases will end? i just want to know what will happen already D:

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:12pm
  29. ehehehehehehehehhehe

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:12pm
  30. Save money–end the ban.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:13pm
  31. Smh

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:15pm
  32. And he is using incorrect data to fight a losing battle.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:15pm
  33. Save money: legislation not litigation.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:15pm
  34. Let him use his salary. How about letting the taxpayers donate their state taxes toward DEFENDING equal marriage in Utah?

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:16pm
  35. WTF!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:16pm
  36. Go ask Duck Dynasty!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:17pm
  37. Yeah this seems like a totally great way to spend tax payer money (sarcasm). Tell ya what…since the Mormon church is so keen on getting this passed..maybe they should be footing the bill in this losing battle.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:22pm
  38. Waste tax money for something no sensible person wants. Smart move.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:28pm
  39. Use the money on something useful freaking idiots. I’m sure u have starving peopke or homeless people or some good cause.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:29pm
  40. But the millions the Mormon church took from members for prop 8 in California a few years ago….that is fine.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:32pm
  41. he wants to steal LGBT taxes to deny LGBT families marriage rights how Jesus freaky of him

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:33pm
  42. good people are seeing the truth finally and are not likeing it vote this and the gop out march.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:35pm
  43. Waste of money.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:41pm
  44. He looks gay, himself, to me. What are gay people trying to prove by hurting their own?

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:42pm
  45. Didn’t a bunch of religious groups file briefs supporting the marriage ban? I say tax those groups to pay for this atrocity. Then keep taxing them after marriage equality triumphs.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:43pm
  46. Waste of money should not be allowed the federal government has spoken stop your hate and waist of money it’s stupid

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:44pm
  47. Well, he should not be allowed to have it.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:44pm
  48. It’s a disgrace and abuse of taxpayer’s dollars being used to defend bigotry and prejudice. It’s what is so wrong with the powers given to those supposed to govern who instead get sidetracked with their own agendas.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:48pm
  49. Wouldn’t it be just hilarious if this bankrupted Utah?

    Hey, I can dream, can’t I?

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:48pm
  50. Why can’t he spend it on something better like charity?

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:49pm
  51. He wants more money from taxpayers many thousands are gay taxpayers, to fight an Un Constitutional ban against gay marriage? ? With that logic & stupidity he won’t get more money to waste. & he will lose. Try solving the job situation, poverty, first. Morons never cease to amaze me.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:51pm
  52. he could save a lot of money by doing the right thing.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:52pm
  53. …as equal rights are on the move why defending a lost battle? Let the bigots pay!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:53pm
  54. Scumbag.

    Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2014 at 11:55pm
  55. Great idea! Let’s waste more tax money to defend this bigoted law! We all know just how much better heterosexual marriages are without knowing your gay neighbor or work associate are also married!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:03am
  56. Spend as much as you want. It’s that much less the Mormon Church can spend on its other hate activities.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:04am
  57. Give it up…

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:04am
  58. How did all that money the LDS spent on denying marriage equality with Prop 8 been working for you? In case you hadn’t noticed, gays can marry in California! Isn’t that just fantabulous!!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:06am
  59. They will receive non if there going to use my money to inforce bigotry and fight equality than they will get zero

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:09am
  60. You know those evil people will beg, borrow and steal to get the money.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:13am
  61. Denied. Let’s build some extra playgrounds, parks and pre-schools instead!!! :-)

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:18am
  62. you ain’t getting a dime

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:23am
  63. Wait. Let me find my wallet. NOT!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:25am
  64. Der Utes …. keep a tube of KY handy.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:31am
  65. No!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:32am
  66. Bullshit.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:33am
  67. Ask the church fuckhead

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:34am
  68. At this point there is NO turning back on today’s Civil Rights Movement. So give it up you stupid Bastards and look out the the 34 States that at this point do not recognize Gay Marriage because its coming your way as well. WE ARE NOT GOING BACK IN THE CLOSET! You Straight idiots can go into the closet.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:34am
  69. Get it from your fucking church since they’re pulling the strings.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:41am
  70. Oh, they will.

    Replied on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:25pm
  71. Hellz No!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:46am
  72. Lets see how the taxpayers of Utah will react to higher taxes! TeeHee!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:49am
  73. Next month at a press conference he gives his closing statements wearing a suit of money.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:54am
  74. Utah already has marriage equality, so they need to just drop it and as far as money goes, they’re not getting a penny. They can just crumble and go for broke. They need to just leave marriage equality alone, it is what it is.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:00am
  75. Wow what a disgrace !

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:01am
  76. Ahh long live the theocracy that is Utah. Sigh…..

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:10am
  77. Your tax money going to promote hate and unequal treatment of others , this man is an imbecile and homophobic bigot moron he should be removed from office. Protest this foul human lunatic.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:10am
  78. Well, now- if the fine people of UTAH want to BAN Same-Sex Marriage— it don’t come cheap… dig deep folks- let’s deny your Brothers the right to Marry !!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:15am
  79. Oh pity they’re going broke! I feel just horrible. :)
    Happy Dance

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:23am
  80. Funny how he’s using our tax payer money to fight against us. Isn’t Irony just grand? But seriously this guy needs to get his head out of his ass and our money out of his wallet.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:28am
  81. Why? Because it’s indefensible.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:35am
  82. Sorry, bitch.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:52am
  83. Never been so glad to hear someone going broke :D

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:54am
  84. Stupid people put it up for a vote and let them know how much per person it would cost

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:00am
  85. His illogical arguments and talking points will be nothing for him soon.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:11am
  86. So the bigots would rather go broke and not be able to support their own family rather then see other people be happy?

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:13am
  87. Rumal KaluarachchiRural – you dare to make such a comment? Are you a US citizen?

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:20am
  88. its bc of mormons u know of course.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:28am
  89. asshole

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:43am
  90. Wow, what kids these days spend their money on. :/

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:47am
  91. No. Spend your own money, and I don’t mean your state salary. Money you had before you took office. You don’t get to attack citizens with taxpayer money.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:51am
  92. Use the money to feed the hungry not ban gay marriage. Too many idiot politicians.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:59am
  93. Pendejeta!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 3:04am
  94. I wonder when the taxpayers of UT will demand this insanity ends? The solution? Vote straight line Democrat, and given the Republicans’ redistricting and various voter suppression tactics, make sure your vote is counted!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 3:06am
  95. idiot

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 3:25am
  96. The Mormon church has mega bucks. Everybody has to tith. They are not gonna win – Equality underthe law has to stand.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 3:38am
  97. what a pathetic little useless man…wasting money. You sicken me to know end trust me you maggot you’ll get whats coming to you

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 3:38am
  98. Why bother…someday….

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 3:52am
  99. Loser.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 4:18am
  100. I hope Lgbt people become tax exempt this year too. This is outrageous.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 4:32am
  101. Utahians — don’t pay the money. It will wind up hurting you later. Karma is sweet, you know, served with whipped cream and a maraschino cherry on top.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 4:37am
  102. Nevada might have some leftover funds. Read the news Utah AG!!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 4:39am
  103. All of the LGBTQ people and people who support Equal Rights should do an tax protest aginst The State Of Utah since the tax money will go to the Illeagle Same Sex Marrage Ban. RISE UP AND PROTEST AGINST THE BIGOT HATERS!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 4:41am
  104. he should just come out of the closet. We know he likes the D.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 5:09am
  105. Is this really the best use of Utah taxpayers’ dollars?

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 5:38am
  106. What harm does same-sex marriage actually do, other than having 2 members of the sam-sex get married? Have you ever considered how much $$$ we spend on things?

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 5:53am
  107. Yet polygamy is alive and thriving! They make me sick!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 6:32am
  108. AG: Asshole general

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 6:37am
  109. I suppose there are enough dumbass Mormons who would support paying more taxes on cause. Sigh, bloody sigh!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 7:49am
  110. Too fucking bad jerk off.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 9:55am
  111. The morons oh wait Mormons will give billions. Just call Mitt Romney. He can put all that money he has for shipping American jobs to Asia to good use. How could 47% of the country vote for this traitor.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 10:22am
  112. helloo

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 10:27am
  113. Wow! Now that you see the words “losing this big time” in your future you have to play American Taliban and try to do as much damage as you can on the way down.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 11:00am
  114. Travesty. The Mormon church is outspending government to turn Utah into a magic underpants theocracy…

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 11:41am
  115. shove your money where the sun don’t shine,,u bigot.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 11:52am
  116. Maybe people dont want it defended anymore,its constitutional.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:24pm
  117. Fuck you

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 12:41pm
  118. get a life asshole!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:15pm
  119. Whatever, the tide has turned and this country is moving forward however hard the Red states throw their little hissy fits. It’s over, kiddies. Human Rights/Civil Rights will prevail AGAINST your regressive politics.
    Go ahead, burn some more money.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:29pm
  120. total asshole….

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:40pm
  121. shame that taxer money in this or any economy is being squandered on a no win position. Feed the hungry, cloth the poor, house the homeless-Mormons must have a different Bible-

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 1:58pm
  122. To bad no more money

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:31pm
  123. Spend your money on something worthy like giving us equality, our kids a better education and important things like that you dumb asses..

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:39pm
  124. Idiot!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:43pm
  125. WHY does Utah continue to pursue something that they really have NO chance of winning? PLEASE, stop using tax payer money for frivolous pursuits and use it for something like..oh, I don’t know EDUCATION OF OUR CHILDREN?!?!

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 2:53pm
  126. States are so silly.. Do they realize how much money the state would get by allowing same sex marriages… *SMH* Idiots.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2014 at 3:33pm