Today, The Michigan Supreme Court heard arguments regarding the hotly contested proposal 2 of 2004, the marriage amendment. At issue, Does the Marriage Amendment to Michigan’s Constitution bar various public sector employers from providing health insurance benefits to employees’ qualified same-sex domestic partners?
At the time Proposal 2 was adopted, many public employers were offering same-sex domestic partner benefits. After its passage, Governor Granholm convinced the unions to put a hold on these benefits, stating there was a “legal cloud” over the current contracts.
Although supporters of Proposal 2 has assured the public that the passage of the amendment would not affect domestic partner benefits, Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox wrote an opinion that “same-sex benefits are now in violation of Michigan’s Constitution.”
Even though the Ingham County Circuit Court held that the amendment “does not prohibit public employers from entering into contractual agreements with their employees to provide domestic partner benefits,” the Michigan Court of Appeals in 2007 overruled the circuit court and eliminated benefits for same-sex couple that work for public entities.
The Michigan Supreme Court heard arguments from Cynthia Ann Paul, Attorney for amicus curiae Michigan Pride At Work; Governor Granholm’s office and Attorney General Mike Cox’s office.
A decision is expected within three to six months.