Supreme Court refuses to take up Texas case undermining marriage equality

SCOTUS upheld a ruling threatening spousal benefits for LGBT+ couples by declining to hear Pidgeon v Turner.

The U.S. Supreme Court let stand a Texas ruling that said the right to a marriage license did not entitle same-sex couples to spousal benefits under employee insurance plans.

The city of Houston asked the high court to overturn last June’s Texas Supreme Court decision that determined all marriage-related matters were not decided when the U.S. Supreme Court found a right to same-sex marriage.

The federal court’s decision, issued without comment, allows the Texas court’s ruling to stand.

Lawyers for Houston argued that the Texas court’s ruling was wrong and short-sighted.

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“Equal recognition of same-sex marriage requires more than a marriage license; it requires equal access to the constellation of benefits that the state has linked to marriage,” the city’s lawyers told the court.

Sarah Kate Ellis, President and CEO of GLAAD – the world’s largest LGBT+ media advocacy organization, released the following statement after the Supreme Court of the United States refused to take up Pidgeon v. Turner. This decision upholds the ruling of the Texas Supreme Court saying there is not a de facto right to government benefits for LGBT+ couples. This decision begins the process to undercut marriage equality by erasing spousal benefits, including healthcare, for legally married LGBT+ couples in the state of Texas.

“With all eyes on tomorrow’s oral arguments in the Masterpiece Cakeshop religious exemptions case, the Supreme Court has just let an alarming ruling by the Texas Supreme Court stand which plainly undercuts the rights of married same-sex couples. Today’s abnegation by the nation’s highest court opens the door for an onslaught of challenges to the rights of LGBT+ people at every step.”

Copyright The Gayly – December 4, 2017 @ 10:15 a.m. CST.