South Dakota

South Dakota

Rosenbrahn v. Daugaard

What's Happening:

On May 22, 2014, private attorneys Joshua Newville of Madia Law LLC and Debra Voigt of Burd And Voigt Law Office filed a federal lawsuit in South Dakota against Governor Daugaard, Attorney General Jackley, and other state officials on behalf of six South Dakota couples who are either unmarried or who have been legally married in another state. The lawsuit challenges the constitutionality of a discriminatory state constitutional amendment in South Dakota that only respects marriages between one man and one woman, stating that it violates the Fourteenth Amendment's guarantees to equal protection.

Case Background:

The lead plaintiffs in the case are Nancy and Jennie Rosenbrahn. Also represented are Jeremy Coller and Clay Schweitzer; Lynn and Monica Serling-Swank; Krystal Cosby and Kaitlyn Hoerner; Barbara and Ashley Wright; and Greg Kniffen and Mark Church. 

"We own our own home and own our own business - we have that security," Nancy told Freedom to Marry. "But a lot of people in South Dakota don't, and there are no laws protecting these people from being fired or losing their homes because of who they are. So we want to deliver a message to those people in South Dakota who can't be out loud and speak out - that there is hope for South Dakota. That marriage is one step on our path toward equal protection. That people across the state are committed to fighting beyond marriage and moving the state totally forward on equality. That things are changing - at last."

< Back to Litigation page