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John Roberts: Gay Rights Advocates Have Lost 'Forever' With SCOTUS Decision

AP Photo / Charles Dharapak

Roberts argued in his dissent that it was not the Supreme Court's place to grant gay couples the right to marry, and that same-sex marriage should have been left to the political process in the states to decide.

"Supporters of same-sex marriage have achieved considerable success persuading their fellow citizens—through the democratic process—to adopt their view," Roberts wrote. "That ends today. Five lawyers have closed the debate and enacted their own vision of marriage as a matter of constitutional law. Stealing this issue from the people will for many cast a cloud over same-sex marriage, making a dramatic social change that much more difficult to accept."

He also cited an essay written by "thoughtful commentator" Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in 1985, where Ginsburg argued that the Supreme Court had moved too quickly in its Roe v. Wade decision.

"Closing debate tends to close minds," Roberts wrote. "People denied a voice are less likely to accept the ruling of a court on an issue that does not seem to be the sort of thing courts usually decide."

Roberts said that those in favor of gay marriage could "by all means celebrate today’s decision."

"But do not celebrate the Constitution. It had nothing to do with it," he said.

About The Author


Tierney Sneed is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. She previously worked for U.S. News and World Report. She grew up in Florida and attended Georgetown University.