Oregon Attorney General: NOM should not be allowed to defend marriage ban

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Oregon’s Attorney General has urged a judge to turn down a motion which would allow the National Organisation for Marriage to defend the state’s same-sex marriage ban in court.

Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum in February declined to defend the state’s constitutional same-sex marriage ban in a case bidding to overturn it, saying any defence would not stand up to a challenge.

However, last month, a day before the case was due to go to trial unopposed, the National Organisation of Marriage filed a motion to defend the ban.

Rosenblum has now urged Judge Michael McShane to deny the request, and continue to hear the case for overturning the ban unopposed.

She said: “Neither the organization nor its anonymous members have a valid basis to intervene simply because they disagree with the position articulated by the state’s chief law officer.

“This court should deny the motion to intervene as untimely and without merit.”

David Fidanque of the Orgegon ACLU said previously that his group would also oppose any attempt to intervene made by NOM, “because it is coming at such a late date.”

US Federal Court Judge Michael McShane is scheduled to hear oral arguments on May 14.

McShane had to play devil’s advocate and himself ask questions in favour of defending the ban during opening arguments, given the lack of opposition from the state.