Saturday, June 20, 2009

ADF's lawsuit to overturn D.C. Elections Board's rejection of referendum on recognition of same-sex marriages elsewhere: the stakes

06/19/09 Washington City Examiner (source: ADF Alliance Alert):

06/19/09 update

Unless the D.C. Superior Court intervenes before July 6th, a law will take effect that requires D.C. to recognize same-sex marriages licensed elsewhere. A referendum on the law can not be held once it takes effect. Opponents of same-sex marriage fear that without a referendum, they have no effective way to preempt the next expected step of the D.C. Council - to adopt legislation that allows same-sex couples to marry in D.C..

The Alliance Defense Fund seeks a stay of the law. But Judge Judith Retchin in the case expressed doubt that she has authority to issue a stay:

“You’re out of time already if the court doesn’t stay the legislation,” Retchin told the proponents’ counsel, Brian Raum of the Alliance Defense Fund. “I don’t know if the court has the power to stay the legislation.”

06/18/09 Washington Post (source: ADF Alliance Alert):

Opponents of gay marriage filed a lawsuit in D.C. Superior Court yesterday hoping to force a referendum on whether to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other jurisdictions ... The plaintiffs are being represented by attorneys from the Alliance Defense Fund, a Christian advocacy and legal defense group.

06/17/09 Washington City Paper (source: ADF Alliance Alert):

Here is the petition in the case. The lawsuit

comes two days after the Board of Elections and Ethics ruled that such a referendum, to overturn a recently passed District law recognizing out-of-state gay marriages, would violate the D.C. Human Right Act and thus would be ineligible to appear on the ballot ... [T]he petitioners have asked for expedited review, since the law is scheduled to exit congressional review and go into effect on July 6—putting it out of the reach of referendum.

06/17/09 Alliance Defense Fund press release:

Alliance Defense Fund attorneys filed a lawsuit Wednesday against the District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics on behalf of Bishop Harry R. Jackson and other D.C. voters, challenging its vote Monday to deny the people a say on the city council’s decision to recognize same-sex “marriages” from other jurisdictions.

06/17/09 Washington Times (source: Gay Marriage Watch):

The group behind an unsuccessful effort to get the D.C. elections board to put the issue of same-sex marriage to a referendum plans to challenge the board's decision in D.C. Superior Court on Wednesday.

06/15/09 NY Times:

The District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics rejected a proposed ballot question intended to block city recognition of same-sex marriages from other locations ... [T]he election board said the referendum was not allowed under the city’s 1977 Human Rights Act.

6/16/09 Religion Clause (source: ADF Alliance Alert):

The Board has also posted online the full text of legal comments it received on the proposed referendum.

06/16/09 The American Prospect Tapped Blog (source: ADF Alliance Alert):

[Although the Alliance Defense Fund will appeal the Board's decision,] staffers for Democrats on the relevant committees in Congress have told me they have no intention of interfering with the D.C. City Council's decision. The D.C. Council will likely be considering full marriage equality within the year. The only hope for anti-marriage-equality activists seems to be for Congress to rally around the D.C. DOMA Act or similar legislation, and right now that seems unlikely.

No comments:

Commentators, Subjects and Cases