happily ever after

Texas Already Ruled Banning Gay Marriage Is Unconstitutional. So Can This MA-Married Couple Divorce There?


That’s cute how you expected Texas Attorney General Greg Abbot to side with the lesbian partner who, in breaking up with her wife, wants their Massachusetts marriage “voided” rather than receive a “divorce.” Because this is capital-T Texas, where marriage is for opposites, so some quackery out-of-state legal marriage isn’t recognized here. And neither, then, should a proper divorce.

Angelique Naylor wed her yet-to-be-identified wife in Massachusetts, in a perfectly-legal-under-state-law ceremony. But since relocating to Texas, the couple have gone their separate ways, and want to split. Except Naylor wants a traditional(!) divorce; her partner, arguing the marriage is illegal and unrecognized under Texas law, says that’s wholly unnecessary, and a mere “voidance” will suffice. And because there are the homosexuals, of course it has to be about equal rights!

Says Naylor: “My spouse wanted equal rights on the day that we got married, and now that we’re back in Texas, the law allows her to keep assets from me. Now, she wants to step forward and say, ‘no I don’t want equal rights, it’s okay to violate the constitution today as long as I don’t have to share assets.'”

Sounds like a certain tennis pro.

But in cowboy country, there’s precedent for something like this: Just in October, a judge ruled on a very similar case (ending a Massachusetts gay marriage in Texas) and summarily denounced Texas’ ban on gay marriage, calling it unconstitutional. (There, too, AG Abbot stuck his head into the situation, saying a Texas court didn’t have jurisdiction.)

But wait a minute. Aren’t all marriages in Texas illegal? And, thus, there’s no need for divorce?