Gov. Herbert statement on Supreme Court decision regarding same-sex marriage

SALT LAKE CITY (Oct. 6, 2014) – In response to the Supreme Court’s decision not to hear Kitchen v. Herbert or other same-sex marriage cases, Utah Governor Gary R. Herbert issued the following statement:

“As I have said all along, the people of Utah and people across the country deserve clarity with respect to the law. It is best if that clarity comes from the nation’s highest court. I am surprised–as are many on both sides of the issue–that the Supreme Court has made the decision not to consider Utah’s case, or any similar case from another state.

“I believe states should have the right to determine their own laws regarding marriage. That said, we are a society of laws and we will uphold the law. I have instructed state agencies to implement necessary changes in light of today’s news.

“Once again, I encourage all Utahns–regardless of their personal beliefs on this issue–to treat each other with respect.”

The Governor’s Office also issued a memo to all state agencies:

Dear Cabinet members,

As you are all aware, the United States Supreme Court announced this morning it will not grant certiorari in the Kitchen v. Herbert case, or any other case related to same-sex marriage. The effect of this decision is that the stay that has been in place in Utah’s case has been lifted and Utah’s laws regarding same-sex marriage have been ruled to be unconstitutional.

We have also just received the mandate from the 10th Circuit Court finalizing its order and lifting its own stay. Accordingly, each agency should conduct business today and going forward, recognizing all legally performed same-sex marriages. Please make adjustments to any forms or other processes, as appropriate.

If there are any specific questions that arise, please consult with the Governor’s Office so we can work with the Attorney General to resolve those questions.

Thank you all for you dedicated service to the citizens of the State of Utah. We trust that you and your employees will make sure this transition in the application of our laws occurs as smoothly and professionally as possible.

Sincerely,

Justin Harding
Chief of Staff

Jacey Skinner
General Counsel