State Capitol Highlights

Error message

  • Notice: Undefined index: taxonomy_term in similarterms_taxonomy_node_get_terms() (line 518 of /home1/vanzand1/public_html/vanzandtnews/sites/all/modules/similarterms/similarterms.module).
  • Notice: Undefined offset: 0 in similarterms_list() (line 221 of /home1/vanzand1/public_html/vanzandtnews/sites/all/modules/similarterms/similarterms.module).
  • Notice: Undefined offset: 1 in similarterms_list() (line 222 of /home1/vanzand1/public_html/vanzandtnews/sites/all/modules/similarterms/similarterms.module).

Officials urge state’s high court not to expand same-sex marriage ruling

 

Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton last week filed a friend-of-the-court brief with the Texas Supreme Court over issues they say were not addressed in a landmark U.S. Supreme Court case declaring same-sex marriage a fundamental right.

The three officials asked the Texas Supreme Court to accept their view that Obergefell v. Hodges, the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 2015 decision recognizing a right to same-sex marriage “does not resolve all constitutional issues relating same-sex marriage.” The brief points to Parker v. Pigeon and related cases involving a Houston mayor’s extending benefits to same-sex spouses of city employees, and asks that a lower court’s temporary injunction preventing the extension of those benefits be reinstated.

“Both the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit made clear that Obergefell left a host of issues unresolved,” Abbott, Patrick and Paxton asserted. They maintained that “the traditional, Texas definition of marriage” is still in force because “a federal district court judgment against state officials does not amend the Texas Constitution or the Texas Family Code.”

Referenced in the brief is Texas Family Code Section 6.204 paragraph (c), subparagraph (2), which says “The state or an agency or political subdivision of the state may not give effect to a right or claim to any legal protection, benefit, or responsibility asserted as a result of a marriage between persons of the same sex or a civil union in this state or in any other jurisdiction.” That section of the law took effect on Sept. 1, 2003.

To read the full article, subscribe to the Van Zandt News or pick up a copy from one of our vendors.