Three judge panel will decide Indiana gay marriage case

(MGN Photo, file)
(MGN Photo, file)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments in the Indiana gay marriage case in a Chicago courtroom Tuesday beginning at 10:30 a.m. Indianapolis time.

Twenty minutes will be set aside for attorneys for same sex couples and another 20 minutes for the state.  Solicitor General Thomas Fisher will make those arguments.

Then, both sides in a Wisconsin case will get the same opportunity.

A three judge panel that will be drawn from the 10 judges in the 7th Circuit will decide the case. Seven of them were appointed by Republican Presidents, three by Democrats.

Professor Joel Schumm of the I.U. McKinney School of Law says we won’t know the identity of the panel members until 10 a.m.

“If all three of the judges are appointed by Democratic Presidents then the same sex couples should feel really confident.” he said. “If it’s not, if it’s a mix.  I don’t think that”s going to necessarily determine the outcome.”

That’s because in other appeals judges appointed by Democrats have always ruled in favor of same sex marriages and those appointed by Republicans have split.

In the cases in other parts of the country it has taken about two and a half months to get a ruling.

“I suspect this’ll be faster than that because the 7th Circuit’s expedited the cases,” says Schumm. “They’ve shortened the time for briefs to be filed. They’ve made it clear that they want to decide this pretty quickly, so I’d look for it within a few weeks.”

No matter what happens look for the case to go to the Supreme Court and the ruling to be stayed in the meantime.

 

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