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What’s it costing states to fight same-sex marriage?

As same-sex marriage bans continue to fall in the courts, states on the losing side of the battle are finding themselves on the hook for attorneys’ fees incurred by proponents of marriage equality, to the tune of more than $800,000 thus far, according to Zoe Tillman in this National Law Journal post.

And requests for millions more are still pending in cases making their way through the appellate courts, Tillman notes.

In the cases pending here, the requests themselves have been put on hold while appeals play out.  State Senate President Phil Berger and former House Speaker Thom Tillis intervened in those cases to appeal district court judgments overturning the state’s same-sex marriage ban, following the Fourth Circuit’s ruling on a similar ban in Virginia in Bostic v. Schaeffer.

But several of the attorneys in the Bostic cases are recovering fees.  Says Tillman:

After the Fourth Circuit declared Virginia’s marriage ban unconstitutional, officials reached fee agreements with the plaintiffs’ lawyers. Virginia will pay $60,000 to lawyers in Harris v. Rainey, a class action joined with another case, Bostic v. Rainey, on appeal. A spokesman for the attorney general’s office said the terms of an agreement with the Bostic lawyers were still being finalized.

In Harris, Jenner & Block worked with the ACLU of Virginia and Lambda Legal. Attorney fees will go to the nonprofit lawyers. In Bostic, Theodore Olson of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher and David Boies of Boies, Schiller & Flexner were co-lead counsel. Olson argued in the Fourth Circuit. Representatives from Gibson Dunn and Boies Schiller declined to comment about fees.

 

 

6 Comments


  1. laura rankin

    January 13, 2015 at 1:15 pm

    Ignorance, religious based fear have resulted in states insisting that “Their” interpretation of marriage is the only one. Than why do they eat pork and wear mixed fabrics? All forbidden in the bible. They should be spending $$$ on helping the poor, hungry, disabled homeless, elderly,and veterans in their states. Please watch how these “so called” xtians make a mockery of religion. I often wonder WWJD with such hypocrites!

  2. Jim Wiseman

    January 13, 2015 at 4:39 pm

    I often find it interesting that leftists assign “religion” as the motivation of their opponents. Liberalism may be godless, but it is a religion nonetheless.

  3. Mike

    January 13, 2015 at 5:02 pm

    And those figures do not include the states’ own expenses. These are just the plaintiff’s legal fees the states will have to pay. Bigotry is getting expensive.

  4. david esmay

    January 13, 2015 at 8:09 pm

    What’s their motivation if it’s not religion Jim? There are atheists on the left, right, as well as libertarians. I often find it interesting that righties like to portray themselves as being the victims of manufactured oppression in order to impose their antiquated beliefs on others.

  5. MLS

    January 14, 2015 at 6:07 pm

    Jim Wiseman – how delusional are you?! Liberalism is a political philosophy, not a religion. Just like conservatism is a political ideology which just happens to be (almost entirely) based on conservative religious principles. There are a lot of lefties who are religious but realize that pushing their religion onto other people isn’t appropriate.

  6. LayintheSmakDown

    January 14, 2015 at 7:23 pm

    Definitely money well spent.

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