Greg Abbott

Republican Greg Abbott of Texas is one of 15 state attorneys general who’ve submitted a brief asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review a federal appeals court ruling that declared the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional. The Huffington Post reports:

Indiana, Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Michigan, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, and Virginia signed onto the brief, which is largely based on the argument that “procreation” is a rational basis for the Act and for state marriage laws, as well. Arguing that the Supreme Court has held that “[t]he same equal protection principles have generally applied to state and federal laws,” the attorneys write that “if the federal government has no legitimate reason to define for the purpose of federal programs, considerations of tradition or gradualism are unlikely to save state marriage laws — especially those that differentiate between opposite-sex and same-sex unions in name only.” In their view, a decision nullifying the congressional definition of marriage would necessarily use logic that would lead to the evisceration of state marriage definitions.

The brief calls for the high court to take up Gill v. Office of Personnel Management, in which several couples are suing the federal government for failing to recognize their same-sex marriages. After a district judge sided with the couples and declared Section 3 of DOMA unconstitutional in 2010, the Obama administration announced in 2011 that it would no longer defend that portion of the law. Since then, the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group, led by House Republicans and Speaker John Boehner, have been defending DOMA in court. In May, the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the district court’s ruling, and in June BLAG asked the Supreme Court to review the case.

Read the brief filed by the attorneys general below.

12-13 Fifteen States