Same sex marriage is about to be legal in the state of Utah. Utah! Ponder that for a minute. If you were going to pick one of the very last states that would legalize same sex marriage, it would have been this conservative state.
The fact that the Supreme Court, without saying a peep, is letting court-ordered same sex marriages go forward in Utah is a huge deal. Now you may think that this could well be reversed once there is a circuit split, perhaps in a case from the 5th or 6th Circuit. But remember, there will now be all of these children from legal same sex marriages performed until the Supreme Court could decide to take a case from another circuit. The idea that Justice Kennedy would let that happen, knowing there could well be a reversal down the line seems unlikely.
Instead, the conservatives on the Court probably see same sex marriage as inevitable, and will wait for a circuit split to make their last stand.
In the end, Adam Liptak’s initial instincts about this look like they have been right and mine wrong.