- (Photo: Reuters/Michael Dalder)
More than 200 of the biggest businesses in America, including Google and Microsoft, said on Wednesday that they will file a brief in support of gay marriage with the Supreme Court.
Yahoo News reported that those companies include Microsoft Corp, Google Inc, Starbucks Corp, Pfizer Inc, Amazon.com, Citigroup Inc. and Thomson Reuters Corp, among others.
Facebook, Morgan Stanley and Intel have already announced their support for gay marriage.
The Supreme Court will take a look at two separate cases on March 26 and March 27 that will examine Proposition 8, the California law that banned gay marriage in 2008, as well as the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), signed by former President Bill Clinton, which defined marriage as between a man and a woman.
Several outcomes are possible as a result of a review of these laws. Traditional marriage can be reinstated on a federal level if DOMA is upheld, states can be granted the right to continue making their own laws regarding marriage, or they can even be banned from making same-sex marriage illegal on a state level.
President Barack Obama has long made his views clear that he is not a supporter of DOMA, and in May last year he publicly announced that he believes same-sex couples should be allowed to get married.
On Friday, the Obama administration filed a brief with the Supreme Court against DOMA, urging the justices to strike down the federal law which keeps the government from recognizing same-sex couples legally married in states.
"Section 3 of DOMA violates the fundamental constitutional guarantee of equal protection," argued Solicitor General Donald Verrill. "The law denies to tens of thousands of same-sex couples who are legally married under state law an array of important federal benefits that are available to legally married opposite-sex couples. Because this discrimination cannot be justified as substantially furthering any important governmental interest, Section 3 is unconstitutional."
A number of conservative groups remain opposed to redefining marriage in America, and hope that the national trend in recent years which has seen nine U.S. states, as well as D.C., legalize gay marriage does not continue.
"The Supreme Court has made clear that defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman is constitutional as a matter of public policy," said Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Austin R. Nimocks.
"Thus, Congress and President Clinton acted constitutionally when DOMA was enacted. The wisest course is for the Supreme Court to resist demands to prematurely end the national debate over the future of marriage. The court should respect the freedom of both Congress and citizens to affirm a bedrock social institution that diverse cultures and faiths have honored throughout the history of Western Civilization."