Justice Kennedy
Justice Kennedy

WASHINGTON, D.C. (The Adobo Chronicles) – Citing a major conflict of interest, Justice Anthony Kennedy said today that he will be recusing himself from further deliberations and the eventual vote by the Supreme Court as it prepares to issue a landmark decision on gay marriage in the United States.

The Supreme Court is expected to rule on several cases brought before it to settle once and for all the issue of whether or not the ban on gay marriage is constitutional. Some 37 U.S. states already allow gay marriage.

Kennedy made the announcement after hearing the news that Ireland has become the first country in the world to allow gay marriage through the people’s vote.  The Irish referendum concluded with an overwhelming majority voting to legalize same-sex marriage in this Catholic European country.

Kennedy, a Catholic, is of Irish descent.  Given the overwhelming historic vote by his fellow Irish, he considers it a major conflict of interest for him.

So for any decision to strike or uphold the federal ban on gay marriage in the U.S., the Supreme Court justices must vote 5-3, considering Kennedy’s decision to abstain. A split decision (4-4) effectively upholds the ruling of the lower court, handing victory to four states defending their gay marriage ban before the high court: Michigan, Ohio, Tennessee and Kentucky.

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