Utah Same-Sex Marriage Ban, Amendment 3 (2004)

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The Utah Marriage Amendment, also known as "Constitutional Amendment 3," appeared 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.[1][2]


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.[3]

The court states:[4]

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. [5]

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.[6][7][8]

Election results

Utah Constitutional Amendment 3 (2004)
OverturnedotOverturned Case:Kitchen v. Herbert 
Yes 593,297 65.86%

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?

Campaign contributions

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.

Similar measures

The following are measures that banned or attempted to ban same-sex marriages. Note that a number of them have been overturned.

See also

Suggest a link

External links