GOP hopefuls weigh in on gay marriage
Couple behind Ala. gay marriage case grateful for ruling.
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The couple whose lawsuit toppled Alabama’s gay marriage ban said they are grateful, overjoyed and still a little a bit in disbelief.
Cari Searcy (left) and Kim McKeand filed their lawsuit after the courts refused to recognize Searcy as the adoptive parent of their son, Khaya, because they were not spouses under Alabama law. ”We just want our son to have the same protections that every child in Alabama enjoys and now he can!” the couple said in a statement released Saturday. (The Associated Press/2006 ) MONTGOMERY, Ala. Supreme Court had shown little eagerness to jump into the contentious debate on whether the Constitution permits states to limit marriage to different-sex couples. — The Alabama attorney general is asking a federal judge to stay a ruling that overturned Alabama’s ban on gay marriage, as advocates cheer what once seemed an improbable victory in the deeply conservative state. Granade ruled that the 2006 Sanctity of Marriage Amendment – which prohibited gay marriage in the state of Alabama – violated the due process and equal protection clauses of the 14th Amendment. Cari Searcy and McKeand, along with their 9-year-old son, filed a lawsuit this year challenging the ban that prevented Alabama from recognizing their California marriage and Searcy as a parent to their son that McKeand birthed.
These include the 2013 ruling that the Defense of Marriage Act – the law preventing the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriage legalized by the states – was unconstitutional; and the October 2014 decision to deny appeals to hear seven same-sex marriage cases in five states. Now, through a combination of state voter initiatives, state legislative actions and federal and state court decisions, 36 states and the nation’s capital permit same-sex couples to wed, covering a whopping 70 percent of the country’s inhabitants. Granade on Friday said Alabama’s ban was unconstitutional, ruling in favor of two Mobile women who sued to challenge Alabama’s refusal to recognize their 2008 marriage performed in California. CHICAGO — An Arab-American civil rights organization has asked “American Sniper” director Clint Eastwood and actor Bradley Cooper to denounce hateful language directed at U.S.
The ruling was the latest in a string of wins in the South for advocates of gay marriage rights, but one that the couple’s friends doubted would happen in conservative Alabama. “We three immediately started dancing and doing the happy dance and giggling and laughing and crying and we’ve been celebrating ever since,” McKeand said. Supreme Court announced this month that it will take up the issue of whether gay couples have a fundamental right to marry and if states can ban such unions. After same-sex marriage was legalized in his home country of Argentina, Pope Francis spoke against gay marriage and adoption in behalf of the Roman Catholic Church, saying that gay couples who took in children threatened the survival of the family. “At stake,” the Pope said at the time, “are the lives of many children who will be discriminated against in advance, and deprived of their human development given by a father and a mother and willed by God.” If anything, Alabama’s prohibition of same-sex marriage detracts from its goal of promoting optimal environments for children.
This created a split in the federal appeals courts, and it is when such a split exists that the Supreme Court is most likely to agree to take up an issue. Those children currently being raised by same-sex parents in Alabama are just as worthy of protection and recognition by the State as are the children being raised by opposite-sex parents. Searcy said that her status as a non-parent became clear when a nurse said she needed proof of guardianship to show her procedures needed for the boy’s care.
Robert Bentley said the governor was disappointed in the decision and said the state is reviewing the decision to decide the next steps. “The people of Alabama voted in a constitutional amendment to define marriage between a man and a woman,” Bentley Communications Director Jennifer Ardis said. Constitution requires a state “to license a marriage between two people of the same sex.” The second is whether that same constitutional provision requires “a state to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed out-of-state.” These two questions are interconnected – a positive answer to the first negates the relevance of the second. The Legislature will encourage a vigorous appeals process, and we will continue defending the Christian conservative values that make Alabama a special place to live.”
DENVER — A 19-year-old Colorado woman and Muslim convert who admitted that she planned to travel overseas to join Islamic State militants was sentenced Friday to four years in federal prison as she renounced the violence of radical Islam. In exercising their right to vote, Alabama voters overwhelmingly sent a message that that they want to see society rebuild and strengthen marriage – not have it redefined by unelected judges,” said Tony Perkins, president of the Washington D.C.-based Family Research Council.
David Dinielli, deputy legal director for the Southern Poverty Law Center LGBT Rights Project, said in his personal view, couples should be able to seek marriage licenses when the doors of the county clerks’ offices open Monday. The Alabama Probate Judge Association issued a statement Saturday saying there was nothing in the order to require judges to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. “As probate judges, our duty is to issue marriage licenses in accordance with Alabama law and that means we cannot legally issue marriage licenses to same sex couples.
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