Obergefell v Hodges: legal analyses

Legal analyses of the recent US judgment in Obergefell v Hodges on same-sex marriage

Our recent weekly round-up reported that last week, the US Supreme Court handed down judgment in Obergefell v Hodges 576 US ___ (2015), and by five votes to four, the Court held that the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment oblige all states to provide for same-sex marriage and to recognise same-sex marriages granted in other states. The majority conclusion was:

“No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfilment for themselves. Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right.

The judgment of the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit is reversed.”

We have indicated on a number of occasions that US law is not really within our area of expertise, but in view of our significant readership in the United States and those in the UK for whom this is an area of major interest, we have collated a number of links to the many legal analyses that have been made of the judgment over the past few days.


Religion Clause, Howard Friedman

In the light of the law, Dr Edward Peters

Fr Z’s blog, (formerly: What Does The Prayer Really Say?)

Religion Law Blog, Neil Addison

Matthew Flinn, UKHRB

Neil Foster, Law and Religion Australia

Other reaction to judgment

In addition to the above legal analyses, Anglican Mainstream has posted a frequently updated list of other reactions to the judgment, US Supreme Court rules gay marriage is legal nationwide 5-4; Likewise, this post will be updated.

Cite this article as: David Pocklington, "Obergefell v Hodges: legal analyses" in Law & Religion UK, 2 July 2015, https://lawandreligionuk.com/2015/07/02/obergefell-v-hodges-legal-analyses/

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