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Gay Marriage in the Supreme Court

Religious Liberties Practice Group Teleforum January 26, 01:00 PMFederalist Society Teleforum Conference Call

On January 16, 2015, the Supreme Court granted cert in four same-sex marriage cases from the Sixth Circuit (one case from each of four states of the circuit, -- Ohio, Michigan, Tennessee, Kentucky). The Court called for Reply Briefs by April 17, with oral argument and decision expected this term. Cert was granted on two questions about the Fourteenth Amendment. The questions are: whether the Fourteenth Amendment "require[s]" a "state to issue a marriage license to two people of the same sex", and/or "to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed" in another state or jurisdiction.

The relationship between the two questions is asymmetrical. An affirmative answer to the first settles the second likewise, where the Court could coherently, hold that states must recognize out-of-state same-sex marriages, but not necessarily license them.

The main focus of the Teleforum will be the likely outcome of the cases, especially on the assumption that the Court takes up and resolves the first of the two questions.

  • Prof. Gerard V. Bradley, University of Notre Dame Law School
  • Ilya Shapiro, Senior Fellow in Constitutional Studies, The Cato Institute

Government Wrongs and Victims’ Rights

Criminal Law & Procedure Practice Group Teleforum January 27, 04:00 PMFederalist Society Teleforum Conference Call

Paul G. Cassell, a University of Utah School of Law professor and a former federal judge, will discuss victims' rights to restitution at the federal level. He will focus his presentation on a controversial practice used in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of New York -- secret settlements of fraud cases without notification to the victims of the fraud. The victims are, without notice, unable to seek restitution. Professor Cassell alleges that the practice violates the Crime Victim’s Restitution Act (although the Department of Justice disputes this claim). Professor Cassell will also discuss the opportunity for the Senate Judiciary Committee to discuss this issue during the upcoming confirmation hearing of Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch. Lynch has been the U.S. Attorney authorizing the practice in the Eastern District of New York.

  • Hon. Paul G. Cassell, Ronald N. Boyce Presidential Endowed Chair in Criminal Law, The University of Utah College of Law

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