Utah Same-Sex Marriage Ban, Amendment 3 (2004)
The Utah Marriage Amendment, also known as "Constitutional Amendment 3," was on the November 2004 statewide ballot in Utah as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment, where it was approved, but later overturned by the U.S. District Court for Utah.
Federal appeals court ruling
On June 25, 2014, a three member panel of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the decision made by the U.S. District Court for Utah in December of 2013, which struck down the state's ban on gay marriage. This was the first ruling made by a federal appeals court on this issue, which sets a historic precedent that voter-approved bans on same-sex marriage violate the Fourteenth Amendment rights of same-sex couples to equal protection and due process.
The court states:
We hold that the Fourteenth Amendment protects the fundamental right to marry, establish a family, raise children, and enjoy the full protection of a state’s marital laws. A state may not deny the issuance of a marriage license to two persons, or refuse to recognize their marriage, based solely upon the sex of the persons in the marriage union. For the reasons stated in this opinion, we affirm. 
A recording of the decision can be heard here
Stay of decision
Implementation of the decision was immediately stayed pending anticipated appeals to either the full appeals panel or the United States Supreme Court. The Utah Attorney General announced that he will challenge the decision, bypassing the full 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and taking the case directly to the US Supreme Court.
United States Supreme Court
On October 6, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States declined to hear the case, thus allowing the ruling of the Tenth Circuit Court to stand and legalizing same-sex marriage in Utah.
|Utah Constitutional Amendment 3 (2004)|
|Overturned Case:Kitchen v. Herbert|
Election Results via: The Utah Lieutenant Governor
Text of measure
The language on the ballot said:
Shall the Utah Constitution be amended to provide that: (1) marriage consists only of the legal union between a man and a woman; and (2) no other domestic union may be recognized as a marriage or given the same or substantially equal legal effect?
About $522,000 was spent promoting the measure and about $780,000 was spent to defeat it. Bruce Bastian was the largest donor, individually and through a foundation giving $364,000 to the opposition campaign.
Voters in 30 states have approved legislatively-referred constitutional amendments or initiated constitutional amendments prohibiting same-sex marriages at the ballot box. The first constitutional prohibition was in 1998, and the latest one occurred in May 2012. Most of these amendments define marriage along the lines of a "union of one male and one female."
The following constitutional bans were approved by voters, but later overturned by courts:
- Alaska Marriage Amendment, Measure 2 (1998)
- Nevada Marriage Amendment, Question 2 (2002)
- Montana Marriage Verification, Measure CI-96 (2004)
- Oklahoma Marriage Question 711 (2004)
- Oregon Marriage Measure 36 (2004)
- Utah Same-Sex Marriage Ban, Amendment 3 (2004)
- Kansas Marriage Amendment (2005)
- Alabama Sanctity of Marriage, Constitutional Amendment 774 (June 2006)
- Colorado Definition of Marriage, Initiative 43 (2006)
- Idaho Marriage Definition, HJR 2 (2006)
- South Carolina Amendment 1, the Marriage Act (2006)
- Virginia Question 1, Marriage Amendment (2006)
- Wisconsin Marriage Amendment, Question 1 (2006)
- Arizona Marriage Protection, Proposition 102 (2008)
- California Proposition 8, the "Eliminates Right of Same-Sex Couples to Marry" Initiative (2008)
- Florida Definition of Marriage, Amendment 2 (2008)
- North Carolina Same-Sex Marriage, Amendment 1 (May 2012)
Cases overturning the following bans have been appealed to higher courts and are currently stayed:
- Nebraska Marriage Definition Amendment, Initiative 416 (2000)
- Missouri Marriage Definition, Amendment 2 (August 2004)
- Note: Same-sex marriage is legal in St. Louis County and the state recognizes same-sex marriages.
- Mississippi Marriage Definition, Amendment 1 (2004)
- Arkansas Same-Sex Marriage Ban, Proposed Constitutional Amendment 3 (2004)
- South Dakota Marriage Amendment (2006)
- Texas Definition of Marriage Act, Proposition 2 (2005)
The following constitutional bans were approved by voters and have been upheld or not overturned by courts:
- Louisiana Marriage Amendment, Question 1 (September 2004)
- Georgia Marriage Amendment, Question 1 (2004)
- Kentucky Marriage Amendment (2004)
- Michigan Marriage Amendment, Proposal 2 (2004)
- North Dakota Definition of Marriage, Constitutional Measure 1 (2004)
- Ohio Issue 1, the Marriage Amendment (2004)
- Tennessee Same-Sex Marriage Ban, Amendment 1 (2006)
The following constitutional bans were defeated by voters:
- Note: Arizonans defeated a measure in 2006, but approved one in 2008, which has been overturned.
- Campaign finance details for spending on the Utah Marriage Amendment
- Information from Utah on the Marriage Amendment
- 2004 Utah General Election Results
- 2004 Utah Amendment Results
- ABC News, "Gay Marriage Rulings in Okla., Utah Build Momentum," January 16, 2014
- Salt Lake Tribune, "10th Circuit Court upholds same-sex marriage," June 25, 2014
- LA Times, "Federal appeals court overturns Utah's ban on gay marriage," June 25, 2014
- Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
- USA Today, "Utah to appeal gay marriage case to Supreme Court," July 9, 2014
- ABC News, "Appeals Court: States Can't Ban Gay Marriage," June 25, 2014
- The Wichita Eagle, "Decision could invalidate Kansas ban on gay marriage," June 26, 2014
- The Guardian, "US supreme court decision paves way for sweeping expansion of gay rights," October 6, 2014
State of Utah
Salt Lake City (capital)
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