U.S. Supreme Court

The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the United States. It has ultimate (and largely discretionary) appellate jurisdiction over all federal courts and over state court cases involving issues of federal law, and original jurisdiction over a small range of cases. The Court, which meets in the United States Supreme Court Building in Washington, D.C., consists of a chief justice and eight associate justices who are nominated by the President and confirmed by the United States Senate. Once appointed, justices have life tenure unless they resign, retire, or are removed after impeachment. [ Website ] [ Wikipedia ]

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Estevan Garcia, left, and William Sherr pose for a portrait with their children Jared Sherr-Garcia, 12, right, Bette Sherr-Garcia, 5, center, and Miles Sherr-Garcia, 10, at their home in New York.Photo: Mary Altaffer, AP

U.S. Supreme Court cases put spotlight on gay parents

Saturday, April 20, 2013
In many states, there’s no statewide legal precedent for adoption by gay couples, and the situation may vary from county to county. Nonetheless, adoption by gays is surging. According to the UCLA School of Law’s Williams Institute, there were nearly 30,000 adopted children being raised by same-sex couples in 2009, a threefold increase from the start of the decade. [ Read more → ]
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Binational couples among those awaiting Supreme Court ruling on DOMA

Sunday, April 14, 2013
Jason Kirchick and Christian Pinillos of Stowe, Vt., are worried not only about their future working at a struggling ski lodge but also about their marriage. Now that the lodge has fallen on hard times, the men's jobs are in jeopardy and with his job, so is Pinillos' immigration status. [ Read more → ]
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HRC apologizes for treatment of transgender, immigration rights activists

Monday, April 1, 2013
The Human Rights Campaign on Monday issued an apology for its treatment of transgender and immigration rights activists during rallies supporting marriage equality outside the U.S. Supreme Court last week. [ Read more → ]
AFER-Prop-8-plaintiffs

AFER offers behind the scenes look at Prop 8′s day at the U.S. Supreme Court

Saturday, March 30, 2013
The American Foundation for Equal Rights (AFER) offers this behind-the-scenes look at the preparation and planning for it's March 26 argument at the U.S. Supreme Court, challenging the constitutionality of Proposition 8, California's ban on same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
Supreme Court Gay Marrage

Supreme Court inaction would likely return marriage equality to California

Friday, March 29, 2013
SAN FRANCISCO — The U.S. Supreme Court seems reluctant to use the legal battle over California's same-sex marriage ban to rule that all gay Americans have a constitutional right to wed, but that doesn't mean gay marriage will not be returning to the state. [ Read more → ]
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DOMA is doomed

Friday, March 29, 2013
So it's over. Two days that are now part of LGBT history. Two back-to-back arguments at the United States Supreme Court, with most of the country paying attention—hearing about our lives, our relationships, and how discriminatory government policies and voter initiatives mark us as inferior, unequal, and vulnerable. In Wednesday's case, the issue was section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which withholds federal protection and recognition from same-sex spouses. Once again, the Justices were not only engaged, but talked about us in terms we have rarely heard in these hallowed halls... [ Read more → ]
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Lawmakers rush to catch up with shifting public opinion on marriage equality

Thursday, March 28, 2013
WASHINGTON — Public opinion on same-sex marriage in the United States has been shifting for years. Now lawmakers are hurrying to catch up. [ Read more → ]
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Democrats criticize GOP support of Defense of Marriage Act

Thursday, March 28, 2013
WASHINGTON -- The cost to taxpayers for a House Republican decision to fund the legal team supporting the Defense of Marriage Act has climbed from $500,000 to as much as $3 million, Democrats say in questioning the GOP stance on the gay marriage issue now before the Supreme Court. [ Read more → ]
Kevin Coyne of Washington holds flags in front of the Supreme Court in Washington on WednesdayPhoto: Carolyn Kaster, AP

However the Supreme Court rules, gay marriage debate is far from over

Thursday, March 28, 2013
However the Supreme Court rules after its landmark hearings on same-sex marriage, the issue seems certain to divide Americans and states for many years to come. [ Read more → ]
Nancy Pelosi

Pelosi: GOP has been ‘irresponsible’ on same-sex marriage issue

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
WASHINGTON -- U.S. House Minority Leader, Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), said Wednesday that Republicans who voted to spend millions in taxpayer dollars defending the federal ban on same-sex marriage are "irresponsible," and that she's "very optimistic" the U.S. Supreme Court will strike down the Defense of Marriage Act. [ Read more → ]
This artist rendering shows Roberta Kaplan, attorney for plaintiff Edith Windsor, addressing the Supreme Court in Washington on Wednesday.Dana Verkouteren, AP

A boost for same-sex marriage: Supreme Court justices question federal law

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
WASHINGTON — Concluding two days of intense debate, the Supreme Court signaled Wednesday it could give a boost to same-sex marriage by striking down the federal law that denies legally married gay spouses a wide range of benefits offered to other couples. [ Read more → ]
Demonstrators stand outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Tuesday, March 26, 2013, where the court heard arguments on California’s voter approved ban on same-sex marriage, Proposition 8. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Listen: U.S. Supreme Court releases audio of DOMA hearing

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Supreme Court has released the audio and transcript of Wednesday's hearing challenging the Defense of Marriage Act, the federal law that prevents legally married gay couples from receiving a range of federal benefits that go to married people. [ Read more → ]
Plaintiff Edith Windsor,of New York, waves to supporters in front of the Supreme Court in Washington on Wednesday after the court heard arguments on her Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)  case.Photo: Carolyn Kaster, AP

‘Edie, Edie,’ chants a jubilant crowd as Windsor emerges from Supreme Court

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
WASHINGTON -- Edith Windsor emerged from the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday to loud cheers from marriage equality supporters gathered outside the high court, on this second day of back-to-back same-sex marriage cases. [ Read more → ]
A woman holds up a sign that reads "REPEAL DOMA," the Defense of Marriage Act, as a group from Alabama prays in front of the Supreme Court in Washington on Tuesday.Photo: Carolyn Kaster, AP

High court skeptical of federal marriage law that denies benefits to gay couples

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Supreme Court is indicating it could strike down the federal law that prevents legally married gay couples from receiving a range of federal benefits for married people. [ Read more → ]
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Day in pictures: Marriage supporters rally as high court hears DOMA challenge

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
In the second of back-to-back same-sex marriage cases, the U.S. Supreme Court turned Wednesday to a constitutional challenge to the law that prevents legally married gay Americans from collecting federal benefits generally available to straight married couples. [ Read more → ]
Thea Spyer (left) and Edith Windsor

Day 2 at the high court: Justices to hear challenge to Defense of Marriage Act

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
WASHINGTON — In the second of back-to-back gay marriage cases, the Supreme Court is turning to a constitutional challenge to the law that prevents legally married gay Americans from collecting federal benefits generally available to straight married couples. [ Read more → ]
In this Oct. 1, 2012 photo provided by the U.S. Air Force, a U.S. Army carry team transfers the remains of Army Sgt. Donna R. Johnson of Raeford, N.C., at Dover Air Force Base, of her death first because of a federal law that prohibits the U.S. government from recognizing same-sex unions.Photo: U.S. Air Force, Adrian R. Rowan

Same-sex military families look to high court to remedy DOMA’s injustice

Wednesday, March 27, 2013
As the Supreme Court prepares to consider the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act, gay marriage advocates are focusing attention on the way they say the law dishonors gay service members and their spouses, who are denied survivor payments, plots in veterans' cemeteries, base housing and a host of other benefits that have been available to opposite-sex military couples for generations. [ Read more → ]
People hold up their tickets that had been issued to the general public for entrance Supreme Court in Washington, Tuesday, March 26, 2013, for the court's hearing on California’s voter approved ban on same-sex marriage. Some people waited in line _ even through light snow _ since Thursday for the coveted seats for the argument over California's Proposition 8.  (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Witness to history: ‘I am struck by the changed world in which we now live’

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Sitting in the Supreme Court this morning for the Prop 8 argument alongside my Lambda Legal colleagues Jenny Pizer and Camilla Taylor, I was struck by the changed world in which we now live. Exactly 10 years ago today, the Supreme Court heard Lambda Legal’s historic Lawrence v. Texas case. At that time, 13 states still criminalized oral and anal sex and no state provided any recognition to same-sex relationships... [ Read more → ]
Artist rendering shows Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr., center, addressing the Supreme Court in Washington on Tuesday. Image: Dana Verkouteren, AP

Ideological differences appear to divide Supreme Court justices on Prop 8

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Much will be written about the Proposition 8 oral argument. The bottom line, in my opinion, is that the Court probably will not have the five votes necessary to get to any result at all, and almost certainly will not have five votes to decide the merits of whether Proposition 8 is constitutional. Much will be written about the Proposition 8 oral argument. The bottom line, in my opinion, is that the Court probably will not have the five votes necessary to get to any result at all, and almost certainly will not have five votes to decide the merits of whether Proposition 8 is constitutional... [ Read more → ]
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The day in pictures #2: Courtroom participants, observers meet the press

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Courtroom participants and observers spilled out into a waiting crowd of reporters and cameras on Tuesday to share their experience as witnesses to to the historic Supreme Court hearing challenging Proposition 8, California's ban on same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
This artist rendering shows Attorney Theodore Olsen, right, representing the same-sex couples, addresses the Supreme Court in Washington, Tuesday, March 26, 2013, as the court heard arguments on California's ban on same-sex marriage. Justices, from left are, Sonia Sotomayor,  Stephen Breyer, Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, Chief Justice John Roberts, and Justices Anthony Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Samuel Alito and Elena Kagan.  (AP Photo/Dana Verkouteren)

Highs and lows as Supreme Court justices take marriage issue on a roller coaster ride

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Supreme Court took the marriage equality issue on a roller coaster ride Tuesday as it heard almost 90 minutes of argument in the case testing the constitutionality of California’s ban on same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
Demonstrators stand outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Tuesday, March 26, 2013, where the court heard arguments on California’s voter approved ban on same-sex marriage, Proposition 8. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Listen: U.S. Supreme Court releases audio of Prop 8 hearing

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Supreme Court has released the audio and transcript of Tuesday's hearing challenging Proposition 8, California's ban on same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
From left, attorney David Boies, plaintiffs, Sandy Stier, with partner Kris Perry, from Berkeley, Calif., Jeff Zarrillo, with partner Paul Katami from Burbank, Calif., and their attorney Theodore Olson leave the Supreme Court in Washington on Tuesday.Photo: Pablo Martinez Monsivais, AP

Prop 8 hearing: U.S. Supreme Court may avoid broad ruling on gay marriage ban

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court suggested Tuesday it could find a way out of the case over California's ban on same-sex marriage without issuing a major national ruling on whether America's gays have a right to marry. [ Read more → ]
Demonstrators walk outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Tuesday, March 26, 2013, where the court will hear arguments on California's voter approved ban on same-sex marriage, Proposition 8.  The Supreme Court waded into the fight over same-sex marriage Tuesday, at a time when public opinion is shifting rapidly in favor of permitting gay and lesbian couples to wed, but 40 states don't allow it.  (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Supreme Court plaza packed on first day of same-sex marriage cases

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
WASHINGTON — Supporters and opponents of gay marriage rallied in front of the U.S. Supreme Court as the justices began the first of two days of arguments in gay marriage cases. [ Read more → ]
Marcus, left, and Daniel  German-Dominguez stand outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Tuesday, March 26, 2013, before the court's hearing on California’s voter approved ban on same-sex marriage. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

The day in pictures: Observers eager to witness history at Supreme Court

Tuesday, March 26, 2013
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Supreme Court is poised to wade into the fight over same-sex marriage today, at a time when public opinion is shifting rapidly in favor of permitting gay and lesbian couples to wed. [ Read more → ]
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