Timing of Same-Sex Marriage Appeals

November 13th, 2014

I am quoted in Bloomberg BNA Law Week piece about the timing of the same sex marriage appeals, titled “Mich., Ky. Same-Sex Marriage Bans Upheld; 6th Circuit Decision May Ring in High Court,” by Kimberly Robinson. The article is deeply behind a paywall, so I can’t even link to it. Here are my quotes:

Josh Blackman, assistant professor at the South Texas College of Law, Houston, explained: ‘‘Histori- cally, the latest a petition for certiorari could be granted, and heard in the same term, was by the begin- ning to middle of January.’’

‘‘Such cases are argued in April at the end of the Court’s normal calendar for arguments.’’

‘‘If certiorari is granted at the end of January, or be- ginning of February, the case is scheduled for argument the following October,’’ Blackman said.

‘‘But this is not a normal case.’’

‘‘First, the plaintiffs have announced they will file a petition for certiorari really soon, perhaps in the next week,’’ Blackman said.

‘‘While the states would have 30 days to reply, and can request an extension that would usually be granted, I’ve heard that the states do not plan on waiting, and may file their brief in opposition to certiorari before the 30 days are up.’’

‘‘If the plaintiffs then waive their reply, or file some- thing quickly, it is feasible that this case could be before the justices not too long after Thanksgiving, with a grant before Christmas,’’ Blackman said.

‘‘With such timing, the case would be argued in March or April, with a possible decision by June of 2015.’’

‘‘Second, even if the parties do not move this fast (which they probably will), the Court can always order expedited briefing, or add additional argument days as needed,’’ Blackman said.

‘‘In other words, it is possible this case will be heard this term if everyone moves really, really fast.’’