Marriage Equality Supporters Ask Herbert, Reyes to Stop Fighting Marriage Battle

Jul 9, 2014

About 50 people gathered at the Utah Governor’s mansion Wednesday morning to deliver thousands of signatures collected for a petition asking Governor Gary Herbert and Attorney General Sean Reyes to stop fighting same-sex marriage in court.

Governor Gary Herbert is in Tennessee this week for a meeting of the National Governor’s Association. But that didn’t stop members of the LGBT community, their families and friends from delivering 3,900 signatures to his doorstep. Utah officials are prepared to defend the state’s law banning same sex marriage all the way to the Supreme Court--Even after two lower courts ruled the law unconstitutional.

“It’s time for the governor and the attorney general to stop hurting Utah families,” says Crystal Young-Otterstrom who joined her husband and two children at the event to show support for marriage equality and ask the governor to drop the appeal.

Weston Clark married his partner Brandon Mark in December during the 16-day window when gay marriage was legal in Utah. Standing outside the governor’s mansion Wednesday with their two children, Clark says he wants Herbert to see the families who are affected by policy decisions like Utahs same-sex marriage ban.   

“We are real people and we are real families and we are trying to live our lives,” Clark says. “I was saying to somebody today we’re getting ready to go on a trip and I’ve got to pack, I’ve got to clean the house, I’ve got to do all this stuff. Oh, and on top of that, I’ve got to fight for our family.”

Back in June the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower court’s decision that declared Utah’s gay marriage ban illegal. But the court ultimately stayed its own ruling, anticipating the state would appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The attorney general’s office announced Wednesday it will not be asking for a review from the full panel of 10th circuit judges, but will move forward with a direct appeal to the Supreme Court in the coming weeks.