Anti-marriage constitutional amendment: the 9th Circuit ruled in favor of the freedom to marry on October 7. This ruling is now binding throughout the Circuit, meaning that it is likely that soon same-sex couples will have the freedom to marry in Montana.
On October 7, the United States Court of Appeals in the 9th Circuit ruled in favor of the freedom to marry in cases from Nevada and Idaho. Because Montana is in the 9th Circuit and this ruling is binding throughout the circuit, the path is paved for the freedom to marry for same-sex couples in Montana.
A legal case from the ACLU of Montana is pending before a federal court in the state, and a motion for summary judgment has been filed.
In 2004, anti-gay forces in Montana pushed through Initiative 96, a constitutional amendment that excluded same-sex couples from marriage.
In 2009, a domestic partnership bill was proposed in the state legislature, but it was unsuccessful. In July 2010, seven same-sex couples from Montana filed a lawsuit seeking full partnership protections in the state.
GROUPS ACTIVELY WORKING ON MARRIAGE:
- The ACLU of Montana is leading a legal challenge seeking to overturn the state's constitutional amendment barring same-sex couples from marriage.
- Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage for same-sex couples nationwide.
A majority of voters in Montana have moved to support marriage, with 46% saying it should be legal, including 47% of independents. (Montana State University-Billings, March 2014)
NUMBER OF SAME-SEX COUPLES:
According to The Williams Institute's analysis of the 2010 U.S. Census, 1,348 same-sex couples are living in Montana, representing 3.3 same-sex couples per 1,000 households.
Blog Posts Related to Montana
Now, as momentum surges across the country, it is more important for supporters to do all they can to speak out for the freedom to marry nationwide. Here's what's going on in the 4 other states set up for the freedom to marry soon, plus the 15 where same-sex couples continue to be denied the freedom to marry.
Today, Senator Jon Tester (D-MT) became the 44th United States Senator to co-sponsor the Respect for Marriage Act (S. 1236), the bill that would fully repeal the so-called Defense of Marriage Act, definitively ending federal marriage discrimination and ensuring certainty regardless of where a legally married same-sex couple lives.
In the past week, nine U.S. Senators have announced their support for the freedom to marry, explaining how their views have evolved and how they have come to understand that now is the time to stand on the Right Side of History.
Resources Related to Montana
Demographic and economic information about same-sex couples and same-sex couples raising children in Montana.
Groundbreaking research showing a huge increase in same-sex couples identifying themselves as "unmarried partners".