UK Gay reports: a Louisiana District Judge William Morvant ruled Louisiana’s anti-marriage equality amendment invalid because it violated the “single issue” criterion required by Louisiana’s constitution.
Those familiar with the amendments in 11 other states will be aware that many contain language that appears to restrict civil unions or laws permitting the government to recognize civil or domestic unions that permit unmarried couples to obtain legal recognition for “incidents of marriage”. The precise benefits, right and responsibilities associated with the “incidents of marriage” is not clearly defined. I previously mentioned that AARP has expressed opposition to Ohio’s anti-ssm amendment because they believe these secondary restrictions harm unmarried seniors, depriving them of property and other rights vital to seniors.
Despite the clear existence of multiple issues in the amendment, opponents of same sex marriage have accused Judge Morvant of usurping the role of the legislature. Judge Morvant, a Republican, has a reputation for a no-nonsense approach to application of the law. When presented with an emotional appeal by a gay plaintiff, he responded:
See The Enquirer
Presumably, the Judge did not rule in favor of the plaintiffs out of sympathy for their plight; this is a simple application of the law. The term “District” sounds like a lower court ruling to me, so I assume this will be appealed.