Posts tagged "Courts"

thepoliticalfreakshow:

CINCINNATI — Ohio officials must immediately recognize the same-sex marriages of four couples who sued over the state’s gay marriage ban, a federal judge said Wednesday, while staying the broader effects of his ruling to avoid “premature celebration and confusion” in case it’s overturned on appeal.

U.S. District Judge Timothy S. Black

U.S. District Judge Timothy S. Black

Judge Timothy Black stayed his ruling ordering Ohio to recognize the marriages of gay couples who wed in other states pending appeal in the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati. The appeals process likely will take months.

Had Black not issued the stay, all married gay couples living in Ohio would have been able to immediately begin obtaining the same benefits as any other married couple in the state, including property rights and the right to make some medical decisions for each other.

Black said the stay does not apply to the four couples who filed the February lawsuit that led to the court case, and ordered Ohio to immediately list both spouses in each relationship as parents on their children’s birth certificates.

Liz Wilson and her wife are among those who will have to wait for the appeal to play out.

“It’s frustrating,” said the 44-year-old Cleveland woman, who married her wife in New York last year. “At the end of the day you just want your family to be safe and secure.”

In explaining the stay, Black said that although he doesn’t think the state’s appeal will succeed, there is still a chance the 6th Circuit could overturn his decision.

“The court recognizes that recognition of same-sex marriages is a hotly contested issue in the contemporary legal landscape, and, if (the) appeal is ultimately successful, the absence of a stay … is likely to lead to confusion, potential inequity and high costs,” Black said. “Premature celebration and confusion do not serve anyone’s best interests.”

In a court filing arguing for a stay, attorneys for the state did not contest Black’s stated inclination to allow the four couples to both be listed on their children’s birth certificates.

“We’re happy that the judge agreed to the stay,” said Rob Nichols, Gov. John Kasich’s spokesman. He declined to comment further.

Al Gerhardstein, the Cincinnati civil rights attorney who represents the four couples in the lawsuit and argued against a stay of any kind, said in a statement that “at least for these four couples, the Constitution stands on the side of love.”

“The implementation of same-sex marriage recognition has started and we are all very excited,” he said. “We will try and expedite the appeals process so full marriage recognition for all same-sex couples does not trail too far behind.”

Three of the four couples who filed the lawsuit live in the Cincinnati area. One spouse in each relationship is pregnant and due to give birth this summer. The fourth couple lives in New York City but adopted a child from Ohio.

In Monday’s ruling, Black said the state’s refusal to recognize out-of-state gay marriage is a violation of constitutional rights and “unenforceable in all circumstances.”

“The record before this court … is staggeringly devoid of any legitimate justification for the state’s ongoing arbitrary discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation,” Black wrote.

Including Black, eight federal judges have issued pro-gay-marriage rulings since the Supreme Court’s decision last June that struck down part of the federal anti-gay marriage law. All but one of those rulings has been stayed pending appeal.

Although Black’s order does not force Ohio to allow gay marriages to be performed in the state, Gerhardstein said he was planning to file a lawsuit in the next couple of weeks seeking such a ruling.

The stay order is here.

The case is Henry v. Wymyslo.

Good news out of Ohio on marriage equality.

NewsBreaker: 

BuzzFeed’s Chris Geidner:

Horrible news out of Texas. 

h/t: Tara Culp-Ressler at Think Progress Health

thepoliticalfreakshow:

The temporary stay issued after a federal judge struck down Michigan’s law banning same-sex marriage has been extended until the state completes the appeals process.

That process could take some time. While Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette told the Grand Rapids Press that he hoped the case would be resolved “as quickly as possible,” he has said that he will pursue the appeal all the way to the United States Supreme Court. Some state attorney generals have declined to pursue a defense of same-sex marriage bans. Others have fought against those bans.

But Schuette is in the middle of a re-election campaign and is making his fight against same-sex marriage part of his platform, even writing an op-ed in the Detroit Free Press about it today:

Moreover, Michigan’s voters had a rational basis for their vote: Marriage has been understood to be between one man and one woman by virtually all civilizations throughout the centuries. The notion that marriage would be anything else has only emerged in the last few decades. It is not irrational for voters to support the belief that a mom and a dad are not interchangeable.

Also:

But I also know that there is a difference between a buffet and the state’s constitution. This fundamental document is not a cafeteria in which you can pick and choose which measures are enforced and defended.

That is why I am defending Detroit’s cops’ and firefighters’ rights to their pensions, because the Michigan Constitution says pensions shall not be ‘diminished or impaired.’

That is why I went to the United States Supreme Court to defend equal treatment in admissions to our state’s outstanding colleges and universities. Because it is fundamentally wrong to treat people differently based on the color of skin, gender, race or ethnicity.

Yes, he did somehow manage to be against same-sex marriage but for “equal treatment” in the very same letter. Treating someone differently based on the color of skin, gender, race or ethnicity is fundamentally wrong. Treating someone differently on the basis of sexual orientation is rational. Also, something about public safety officials shoehorned in to try to get more votes.

In the meantime, same-sex couples cannot get married in the state, and the 300 or so who managed to get in the seven-hour window before the ruling was stayed still don’t know whether or not their marriages will actually be recognized by the state. They will, at least, be entitled to federal marriage benefits.

There was hope that Gov. Rick Snyder would make a decision whether or not the state would recognize those marriages by now, but he has so far declined to do so. His spokeswoman said he “doesn’t want to get distracted by issues that could divert his attention from jobs and the economy.”

Source: Sara Morrison for The Wire

addictinginfo:

This Republican Bill Would Require People To Get Court Approval To Date Or Have Sex

GOP Bill Would Force People To Seek Permission From A Judge To Have Sex

This GOP bill would legislate the private lives of consenting adults, both men and women, and forces them to ask a court if they can have sex with someone or date them. Image: Seth Dickens

Once again, Republicans have topped themselves. In the race for introducing legislation that restricts personal freedom the most in America, the Massachusetts GOP has reached a new low.

A GOP bill would force people to seek court approval to date and have sex.

For years, Republicans across the country have sought to police what citizens do in the privacy of their own bedrooms. They’ve tried to outlaw anal and oral sex, even for married couples. And they certainly want to ban gay sex. But now, they want to force people to seek permission from a judge before they can engage in sexual relations.

[…]

S787 is slippery slope that could be a model for legislation in red states in their war on women.

The bill is bad enough as it is. It legislates the private lives of consenting adults, both men and women, and forces them to ask a court if they can have sex with someone or date them. It’s a clear violation of personal liberty and privacy. But it’s also a slippery slope that could give Republicans a new idea to push in their war on women.

Republicans already want to make it harder for women to obtain a divorce. And the GOP isn’t a fan of women having sex outside of marriage. The right-wing has been totally obsessed with restricting the sex lives of women. And now they have a brand new tactic they can use to make women’s lives even more hellish.

In states where Republicans control all branches of government, they could easily craft a bill that bars any woman from dating or having sex with other partners during a pending divorce. And even if such bills are also applied to men to make them seem more fair, the bottom line is that sex lives would be decided on the whims of a judge. And if that judge is a sexist conservative male, he could simply give men permission to pursue other relationships and deny women from doing the same. After all, women’s sex lives are often more criticized then those of men, and are therefore most likely to be affected by such a law.

In short, this Massachusetts bill is a dangerous one that could lead to worse versions in other states. It’s a way for sexist conservatives to punish women for seeking a divorce and a way for them to legislate what women do in their bedrooms.

View On WordPress

h/t: Jamie Raskin at PFAW

Expect marriage equality to be fully legal in the USA by Summer 2015 or 2016. 

H/T: Erik Eckholm at The New York Times

VICTORY!! 

thepoliticalfreakshow:

WASHINGTON — A federal judge has denied Tennessee’s request to put the state’s recognition of three same-sex couples’ marriages on hold while state officials challenge the judge’s original decision.

U.S. District Court Judge Aleta Trauger issued a preliminary injunction last week, but Tennessee officials have appealed the temporary order to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. In addition, the state asked Trauger to put the trial court’s ruling on hold while the appeal is heard.

Trauger on Thursday denied that request, concluding:

The court finds that all four factors weigh against a stay and in favor of continuing enforcement of the Preliminary Injunction. Even if the court were to accept that there is arguably a “serious question” about the merits of its constitutional analysis, the defendants have not even approached their burden to show “irreparable harm that decidedly outweighs the harm that will be inflicted on others if a stay is granted.”

Read the court’s opinion:

Source: Chris Geidner for Buzzfeed

LGBTQNation on Conway’s decision to NOT appeal:  

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Kentucky’s attorney general announced Tuesday that he won’t appeal an order to recognize same-sex marriages from other states and countries and he will allow a judge’s ruling take effect March 20.

Attorney General Jack Conway’s decision means same-sex couples in Kentucky who were married in other states will be allowed to pursue name changes, file joint tax returns with the state, and seek to have names added to birth certificates.

The Democrat said at a news conference that if he appealed, “I would be defending discrimination. That I will not do.”

LGBTQNation on Gov. Steve Beshear’s decision to appeal ruling:

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear says the state will hire outside attorneys to appeal a judge’s decision granting legal recognition to same-sex couples married in other states and countries.

Beshear’s announcement on Tuesday came moments after Attorney General Jack Conway said he would not ask a higher court to review the decision.

Both are Democrats.

Gordon Klingenschmitt is aghast at the recent federal court rulings across the country in favor of marriage equality, telling members of his Pray In Jesus Name Project that “this is way beyond the point where it’s gotten out-of-hand.”

He calls on Congress to impeach and remove from office any judge who sides with pro-gay rights plaintiffs, since any such judge is “a domestic enemy of the Constitution.”

“These lawless judges replace Democracy with dictatorship, abrogate the U.S. Constitution, flaunt the laws of God and nature, assume jurisdiction they don’t have, and overturn the overwhelming vote of good people,” Klingenschmitt writes. “May God have mercy on these tyrants’ souls, when they are judged in eternity.

This is way beyond the point where it’s gotten out-of-hand. The lawlessness on the federal bench requires a house-cleaning. We need a new President to appoint new judges. But until that happens, we MUST pressure Congress to intervene.

Christians do not lose their right to vote simply because they are religious. These lawless judges replace Democracy with dictatorship, abrogate the U.S. Constitution, flaunt the laws of God and nature, assume jurisdiction they don’t have, and overturn the overwhelming vote of good people. May God have mercy on these tyrants’ souls, when they are judged in eternity.

There is NO mention of sexual orientation in the Constitution, and any judge who imagines one is a domestic enemy of the Constitution, and should be impeached and removed from office. We must demand Congress hold the line, and protect the traditional definition of marriage FEDERALLY, like the Oklahoma people did by state.

h/t: Brian Tashman at RWW

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky’s attorney general has asked a federal judge to delay by 90 days an order requiring the state to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states and countries.

The two-page filing Thursday morning says the delay is sought to give the attorney general time to decide whether to appeal the Feb. 12 ruling and would give the state an opportunity to prepare to implement the order.

The request came as parties in the case were awaiting a final order from U.S. District Judge John G. Heyburn II overturning part of Kentucky’s same-sex marriage ban.

Earlier this month, Heyburn concluded that the ban, which has been in place since 2004, treated “gay and lesbian persons differently in a way that demeans them.”

h/t: AP

Great news from the Lone Star State!!!

It calls for a Texas-sized celebration!!