Utah traditional marriage supporters file as Friends of the Court

By Brian Carlson

Published 02/11 2014 05:26PM

Updated 02/11 2014 07:28PM

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Utah) - People who support Utah's fight against same sex marriage are now adding their names to the case. Those considered "friends of the court" are filing their arguments with the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, and it appears there are a large number of them.

Utah's case against same sex marriage is picking up a lot of supporters. Last week the state filed its argument to restore Utah's gay marriage ban with the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Now, at least 84 people or groups are filing themselves as "Amicus Curiae" or “Friends of the Court.”

"A lot of times friends of the court are people that feel like their voice needs to be heard, feel like they have something to add to the equation so to speak," said Greg Skordas, Attorney.

Court rules require voices who agree with the state must file their arguments within one week from that of the State's. For now it appears some of these voices include 10 states from Alabama to Oklahoma, religious groups like the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, private interests such as Eagle Forum, The Sutherland Institute, Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays, and the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality. And, just Monday a group of 81 State lawmakers filed saying quote:

“We especially feel a profound duty to the children of the State, derived from deep historical roots and experience that confirm children are substantially benefited and best served by public endorsement and recognition of marriage as the legal union between a man and a woman as husband and wife.”

Reporter Brian Carlson discussed the friends the court with Salt Lake Attorney Greg Skordas. He believes their arguments could make a difference in the upcoming court's decision.

"Some people may have some knowledge or expertise that is not known by the two parties to a particular case, so I think they can be helpful in certain instances," said Skordas.

Without going into each lengthy individual filing like the one from the 81 State lawmakers, it's not clear if every friend of the court on the current list supports Utah's position on same sex marriage. But given the date of when the groups filed, it's believed most do.

Attorneys representing the gay couple suing the State will file their court brief on February 25th. After that supporters of same sex marriage will have their opportunity to file as friends of the court.

Follow Brian Carlson on Twitter: @briancarlsontv

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