Arguments were heard today in a challenge to Michigan’s Constitutional Amendment barring same-sex couple from marrying. Judge Bernard Friedman of the Eastern District of Michigan said the arguments of the plaintiffs were “compelling;” however, he first wishes to review U.S. Supreme Court rulings on the upcoming cases involving the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and the California case involving Proposition 8. In both those matters, the plaintiffs were successful in challenging laws which discriminated against gays and lesbians. Accordingly, Judge Friedman took the motions under advisement and issued a formal stay of proceedings. He indicated a written opinion would be issued shortly after the Supreme Court opinions are received. Those arguments will be heard by the US Supreme Court later this month, and a decision is expected in June.
The case involves Southeastern Michigan residents April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse who are challenging Michigan’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, as well as its adoption code that prohibits them from adopting their children together.