Obama Aide Cites "Anxiety" Over Gay Marriage Case

Says some gays fear rushing cases like California's Prop. 8 to the Supreme Court.

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One of President Obama's top gay appointees says that the gay community is anxious over the Supreme Court taking up a same sex marriage case until more states have laws on the books addressing the controversial issue.

Kevin Jennings, director of the Education Department's Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools and the founder of Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network , told a group of Washington interns this week that the court doesn't like to take up hot cases before there has been a lot of action in the states. "The federal government generally tends to pick up a view and replicate it once it has been tried and tested and proven and the local and state level," said Jennings, whose host was the progressive Alliance for Justice. He spoke on Tuesday, the day before a California judge scrapped a new law banning gay marriage.

Using gay marriage as an example, he said that the court would likely prefer to decide on it only after there are more laws on the books approving it. As a result, he signaled anxiousness in the gay community that if forced, the court might not rule the way gays want.

Because few states have gay marriage laws on the books, he explained, there is a debate in the community over rushing a case to the Supreme Court. "That is part of the anxiety some people have in the LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender] movement around bringing right now a case around same sex marriage to the Supreme Court because with only five states having approved same sex marriage, there's a lot of anxiety of that the courts don't like to get too far out in front of where the states are," said Jennings.

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