Marriage front and center in Kagan hearings
July 01, 2010
Like most other issues on the table during the past three days of testimony it is hard to pin down exactly where the presumptive next Supreme Court Justice stands on many issues in her attempts to display impartiality on controversial topics. This is certainly nothing new in the ongoing history of such proceedings, but she did allude to the fact that she is not in favor of legal marriage discrimination describing the Minnesota decision to ban same-sex marriage as having only "some precedential weight".
‘Grassley then turned to Baker v. Nelson, a 1970 case that challenged a Minnesota law denying same-sex couples the right to marry. After the Minnesota supreme court ruled the statute did not violate the U.S. Constitution, the case was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which ultimately dismissed the case in a summary judgment citing the lack of a “substantial federal question.”
Grassley asked Kagan if she agreed with that decision and considered it “settled law,” thereby setting a precedent for all future cases.
Kagan responded that her “best understanding” of that ruling was that it held only “some precedential weight.”’
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