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Federal Judge Rules That KY Must Recognize Same-Sex Marriages From Other States

Gay-Marriage-Hands-No-Text-14146794_158577_ver1.0_320_240_1383695408391_1219149_ver1.0_320_240The steady drip-drip-drip of court rulings keeps eroding the ban on marriage equality. In the latest case, a federal judge has ruled that Kentucky must recognize same-sex marriages that were performed elsewhere, striking down a portion of the state’s ban on marriage equality and suggesting that the entire ban may not withstand another challenge.

Kentucky voters passed a marriage ban in 2004 that included a provision that the state would not recognize marriage performed elsewhere. In his decision, U.S. District Judge John G. Heyburn II said that “it is clear that Kentucky’s laws treat gay and lesbian persons differently in a way that demeans them.” He was ruling in a case brought by four gay and lesbian couples who live in Kentucky but were married in other states or Canada.

Heyburn, who was appointed to the bench by George H.W. Bush in 1992, was careful to preemptively address a number of issues, including a single judge overruling a measure that voters passed by a large margin. He also noted that many Kentuckians still believe that same-sex marriage violates their religious beliefs. However, Heyburn wrote, “One’s belief to the contrary, however sincerely held, cannot alone justify denying a selected group their constitutional rights.”

The ruling also suggested that the ban on marriage equality in Kentucky itself would not sustain a legal challenge.

“[T]here is no doubt that [the Supreme Court ruling on] Windsor  and this Court’s analysis suggest a possible result to that question,” Heyburn wrote. He noted that “all federal courts that have considered same-sex marriage rights post-

Windsor have ruled in favor of same-sex marriage rights.”
Religious-right leaders predictably freaked out at the ruling. Martin Cochran, an analyst for the Family Foundation of Kentucky, which filed a brief in support of the ban, revealed his lack of understanding as to where the U.S. Constitution resides by claiming that “Kentucky marriage policy will now be dictated from places like Boston and San Francisco.”
Meantime, things are heating up in a number of other states that just a few months ago would have seemed unlikely prospects. In Texas, U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia heard arguments today in a challenge to that state’s voter-passed ban on marriage equality. State Attorney General Greg Abbott, a Republican seeking to replace Rick Perry as governor, has pledged to defend the ban with Alamo-like fervor. Lawsuits are also being planned to challenge marriage bans in Missouri and Louisiana.
By:           John Gallagher
On:           Feb 12, 2014
Tagged: , , , , , , , ,

  • 11 Comments
    • TheNewEnergyDude
      TheNewEnergyDude

      Everytime a back asswards, bible thumping bigoted state gets a good kick in the teeth about their knuckle dragging ways, my heart skips a beat. :)

      Feb 12, 2014 at 2:32 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • DShucking
      DShucking

      @TheNewEnergyDude: That’s what I’m sayin. KY no less.

      Feb 12, 2014 at 3:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • tdx3fan
      tdx3fan

      The dick from Texas does realize that the Alamo was the last stand because everyone died or was captured at the end right. What a wonderful analogy… one where he loses! Or, are Texan Republicans too stupid to learn their own history!?!

      Feb 12, 2014 at 3:54 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • MikeE
      MikeE

      @tdx3fan: ooo, ooo, ooo!! pick me! pick me!!!

      Alex, I’m going to go with “what is ‘yes’?”.

      Feb 12, 2014 at 5:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • SteveDenver
      SteveDenver

      I love their jelly!

      Feb 12, 2014 at 7:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • aequalitasTN
      aequalitasTN

      You know it never ceases to amaze me at the amount of bile that spews out of the conservative hate groups presenting themselves as God loving Christian moral people. I heard an interesting quote while watching the documentary “Fish Out of Water” stating that “Christianity always has to have a victim,” and I couldn’t agree more. Mind you, I note that this is a trait of institutionalized Christianity, not necessarily of individual Christians, or even as a part of Christian doctrine as presented in the gospel accounts. In any historical review of institutionalized Christianity, we can clearly see the victims, first the pagans, then the Jewish people, then the “heretics,” then the “witches” and finally, even in the “New World” Christianity targeted the Native Americans, then the “witches” again, then the African Americans as slaves, then after emancipation, again as a “lesser race,” then women as the “lesser sex,” and finally now since the suppression of those groups failed, because people with logical intelligence finally stood up and said “enough is enough,” they have moved on to LGBT individuals. Now, just as when each of the other vitimizations were being put down by the judiciary, activists, or just plain individuals who were sick of hearing the ridiculous rhetoric, they are crying foul because it is their religious right to hate and suppress these groups. While I agree these people have a right to believe in this hate, they do not have a right to suppress the rights of others with it, as they always try to do when they find a group to victimize. Yet somehow, their religious right to legislate their version of morality, is always superior to every other person’s rights. How is this in any way in conformity with the example that their religion’s founder laid down for them to follow? Further, how can they reconcile this hatred with the American ideal of “equality under the law?”

      When this is all over, and the Supreme Court finally smacks these people upside their hateful heads with equality, there will be detractors, formalized resistance, most likely in the same form, and from the same type of high ranking politicians (state governors,etc.) protesting the High Court that was common with end of segregation (except this time they will standing in front of the county clerks office refusing to issue marriage licenses instead of blocking the entrance of schools to prevent racial minorities from entering), when the National Guard has be federalized and the US Marshals used to enforce the will of the Court and the rights of people, they will finally relent and then find a new group to victimize. Thus goes the flow of history. When does it stop? When are people going to collectively stand up to the oldest and longest standing bully in history?

      Feb 12, 2014 at 8:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • mzvky
      mzvky

      @TheNewEnergyDude:

      …and an angel gets his wings!

      Feb 12, 2014 at 8:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Vegas Tearoom
      Vegas Tearoom

      And all of this because of one juror…

      Feb 12, 2014 at 9:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jwrappaport
      jwrappaport

      You should check out the opinion. It didn’t break any new ground as far as doctrine goes, but it was incredibly thoughtful and even-handed:

      http://thinkprogress.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/KYMarriage.pdf

      Feb 12, 2014 at 9:06 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Dakotahgeo
      Dakotahgeo

      These anti-Marriage Equality birds are getting plucked, one day at a time. Next, the boiling water.

      Feb 13, 2014 at 6:18 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • multitasker
      multitasker

      Alamo-like fervor? Is that a quote from somebody? All the defenders died. The Mexican army won. Somebody thinks they’re potential martyrs to the cause of discrimination?

      Feb 14, 2014 at 6:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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