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    Family Law Legal Research Blog

    Windsor Update: Tennessee

    Posted by Gale Burns on Mon, Mar 24, 2014 @ 12:03 PM

    Brett Turner, Senior Attorney, National Legal Research Group

         A federal district court in Tennessee has granted a preliminary injunction against the enforcement of Tennessee's constitutional and statutory provisions against recognition of same-sex marriages from other states. Tanco v. Haslam, No. 3:13-CV-01159, 2014 WL 997525 (M.D. Tenn. Mar. 14, 2014). The opinion cited most of the relevant post-Windsor federal court case law, noting that the federal courts have so far unanimously held that the states are not permitted to restrict marriage to persons of the opposite sex, and finding a likelihood that the plaintiff will prevail on the merits. The court paid particular attention to the Kentucky decision in Bourke v. Beshear, which is discussed here.

         The Tanco case involves only the constitutionality of Tennessee's restrictions upon same-sex marriage. The plaintiffs are not arguing that Tennessee should be compelled to allow its own
    citizens to enter into same-sex marriages.

         In the world outside court decisions, a study of polling on same-sex marriage suggests that support for such marriages is not only increasing, but increasing at an increasingly faster rate. This fact may increase the likelihood that the present wave of decisions requiring broad recognition of same-sex marriages will be accepted by society generally, and by conservative social groups in particular, with a minimum of disruption.

    Topics: legal research, family law, Brett turner, Windsor update, Tennessee, Tanco v. Haslam, MD Tenn, constitutionality of restrictions in question

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