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Old 09-10-2014, 04:01 PM
Location: Type 0.7 Kardashev
10,577 posts, read 7,274,031 times
Reputation: 37474


Matching the speed of lawyers and lower courts in handling the same-sex marriage controversy, the Supreme Court on Wednesday set the stage for its first look at all of the pending cases, when the Justices assemble on September 29 for a private Conference.

In conference is where the high court decides which appeals it will hear. It agrees to hear an appeal (grants a writ of certiorari, or grant cert) in about 1% of all cases appealed to it, but is widely considered likely to hear one or more cases dealing with this issue.

The court has three options:
1) Grant cert. A schedule for briefs and oral arguments will then follow, with a decision coming somewhere 2-4 months after arguments are heard.
2) Deny cert. In this case, the Circuit Court of Appeals ruling stands as binding law. For example, if the Fourth Circuit decision striking down Virginia's law prohibiting same-sex marriage, then such laws would be unconstitutional throughout the Fourth Circuit - not just Virginia but also Maryland (where same-sex marriage is already allowed) as well as North Carolina, South Carolina and West Virginia.
3) Defer consideration to a later conference (most likely, one held a week or two later).

The end-game is playing out.

The conclusion rather obvious.

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