Delaware and Pennsylvania have signed on with 13 other states asking the U.S. Supreme Court to decide the issue of same-sex marriage once and for all.
The Supreme Court ruled last June that the federal government must recognize marriages performed in states that allow them. The 15 state attorneys general are now asking it to consider whether state bans themselves are unconstitutional.
The amicus brief, or “friend of the court” filing, said the states have a “compelling interest in ensuring that all citizens have equal opportunity to participate in civic society.”
Attorney John Stapleton’s legal firm Hangley Aronchick worked on the case that led to a federal judge overturning Pennsylvania’s same-sex marriage ban this May. That case was one in a wave of opinions across the country favorable to same-sex couples, written by Democratic and Republican appointees.
“This is really a request to the high court of the United States to decide that all same sex couples — no more fighting on a state by state basis — all same-sex couples are entitled to that fundamental right to marriage,” Stapleton said.
The attorneys general for Pennsylvania and Delaware did not return requests for comment.
A second group of states filed a separate request asking the high court to settle the matter in order to end costly rounds of litigation.