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Kagan and Ginsburg: Recuse Yourselves!

Friday, January 16, 2015 @ 4:50 PM

TUPELO, Miss.—The issue of same-sex marriage in America has divided the country this past year, with state, district and federal courts issuing ruling after ruling.

In light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s announcement that it will hear the issue, American Family Association (AFA, www.afa.net) says Supreme Court Justices Elena Kagan and Ruth Bader Ginsburg should recuse themselves from making any same-sex marriage decisions because they have both conducted same-sex marriage ceremonies.

“Both of these justices’ personal and private actions that actively endorse gay marriage clearly indicate how they would vote on same-sex marriage cases before the Supreme Court,” said AFA President Tim Wildmon. “Congress has directed that federal judicial officers must disqualify themselves from hearing cases in specified circumstances. Both Kagan and Ginsburg have not only been partial to same-sex marriage but they have also proven themselves to be activists in favor of it. In order to ensure the Court’s integrity and impartiality, both should recuse themselves from same-sex marriage cases. Congress has an obligation to Americans to see that members of the Supreme Court are held to the highest standards of integrity. The law demands it, and the people deserve it.”

AFA sent an Action Alert to its one million-plus supporters, asking them to write a letter to their members of Congress, urging them to remind members of the nation’s highest court of their charge to maintain impartiality. Title 28, Part I, Chapter 21, Section 455 of the U.S. Code titled “Disqualification of justice, judge, or magistrate judge,” states that “Any justice, judge, or magistrate judge of the United States shall disqualify himself in any proceeding in which his impartiality might reasonably be questioned.”

Kagan performed a September 21, 2014, same-sex marriage ceremony for her former law clerk and his partner in Maryland. And Ginsburg performed a same-sex marriage ceremony at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C., in August 2013.

OneNewsNow.com, AFA’s news service, also reported that Ginsburg has officiated at least five same-sex marriage ceremonies. 

According to a 2010 article in the Washington Post when Kagan was first appointed, she recused herself from several cases at the start of her time on the bench. In the first term she served as the 112th Supreme Court Justice, for example, Kagan recused herself from about half of the 51 cases the Court had accepted in that term because of her work as solicitor general, the government’s chief legal representative in the Supreme Court and the nation’s lower appellate courts.

AFA suggests in its Action Alert that concerned Americans write a letter to their members of Congress urging them to call on Justices Kagan and Ginsburg to recuse themselves from any same-sex marriage cases, as their previous actions in performing same-sex ceremonies raise more than a reasonable doubt regarding their impartiality on this issue.

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