Are individual people and states losing political power?

By Ali Monsen

Published 06/25 2014 06:51PM

Updated 06/25 2014 06:54PM

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) – Conservatives voiced concerns that individual states are losing power they are entitled to, Wednesday, after a federal appeals court ruled in-favor of same-sex marriages. 

Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Utah’s ban on gay marriage is unconstitutional, specifically the Fourteenth Amendment.  They argued that under Utah’s Amendment 3, same-sex couples’ due process and equal protection rights being violated.

Utah voters have already made it clear where they stand.  Two-thirds of them voted to define marriage as a union between one man and one woman.  Now, just a few out-of-state individuals have ruled in favor of Utah’s one-third minority, and some say that that is not right.

"In America, I thought that 'we the people' had a say, and we're standing up and saying how we feel, and so for the government to say, 'Okay, just kidding, not you guys—it doesn't matter,' that upsets me,” said Jennie Heap, a concerned voter.

Some are worried the ruling will set a precedent for the rest of the country. 

Gayle Ruzicka, President of the Utah Eagle Forum, says the government is chipping away at the individual states’ power.

"There's no such thing as a federal marriage license.  There's only a state marriage license, and that which we license, we regulate... and we have that right.  No court—no federal court—should ever interfere with the rights of the state to make that decision,” she said.

The Tenth Circuit Court used 108 pages to explain its ruling.  Some say they will be reading through all of that this week.  Ruzicka says if the U.S. Supreme Court does hear the case in upcoming months, she is confident it will rule in favor of the states’ rights to regulate same-sex marriages. 

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