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Attorney General in Pennsylvania Will Support Same-sex Marriage

Kathleen Kane, Pennsylvania’s attorney general, made a statement on Thursday that she “would not defend the state against a lawsuit to overturn a same- sex marriage ban.”

Quoting from the Pennsylvania’s Constitution, Democrat Kane said that there was no tolerance for unequal treatment based on religion, race and physical disability. “It is now the time here in Pennsylvania to end another wave of discrimination,” she said.

According to the NY Times, the suit was filed in Federal District Court in Harrisburg on Tuesday with 23 plaintiffs, composed of 10 gay and lesbian couples, and one woman whose partner of three decades passed away.  This was the first of several planned lawsuits that aim at expanding the number of states that allow same sex marriage, including Virginia and North Carolina.

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California and Illinois attorney generals have also declined to defend their respective states. When the California state officials would not defend Proposition 8, banning same sex marriages, independent supporters came to court. The high court ruled that those people did not have standing. And so gay and lesbian marriages are now happening in the state.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane was criticized for her choice not to defend Pennsylvania’s version of DOMA. Rob Gleason, the chair of the Pennsylvania republican Party commented, “It is unacceptable for attorney General Kathleen Kane to put her personal politics ahead of her taxpayer funded job by abdicating her responsibilities.”

Republican Governor of the state of Pennsylvania, Tom Corbett, commented that her actions seemed contrary to her constitutional duty to defend the Pennsylvania statue. He mentioned that the statue was lawfully enacted by the General Assembly, and that Ms. Kane reneged on her duty because of her personal inclinations.

It seems to me that there is nothing personal about the inclinations of Attorney General Kane. She has considered the constitutionality of DOMA, and finds that she cannot defend Pennsylvania’s version of it, regardless of the fact that the general assembly enacted that statute.

Commenting on all of the feedback against her decision to support same sex marriage as Attorney General, while she was at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, Attorney General Kane rebutted, “I cannot ethically defend the constitutionality of Pennsylvania’s version of DOMA.”

Ms. Kathleen Kane, 47, last year was elected to the position of attorney general. She is one of the future potential candidates for the next governor of the state of Pennsylvania. Explaining her decision, she further commented, “I looked at it this way, who would represent ordinary people, the ‘Daves and Robbies’? Who represents the ‘Emilys and Amys?’ As attorney general, I choose you.”

Attorney General in Pennsylvania Will Support Same-sex Marriage by

  • http://anziulewicz.livejournal.com PolishBear

    Those of us who support marriage equality for law-abiding, taxpaying gay couples didn’t really have a choice but to “target” all the piecemeal, state-by-state bans, didn’t we? The Supreme Court could have issued a comprehensive ruling requiring gay and straight couples to be treated equally, at ALL levels of government, but instead they chose to punt on the some of the details.

    So what now? Most of the legal benefits of marriage come from the federal government. Take survivor benefits under Social Security, for example. Legally married gay couples in Iowa are now entitled to those benefits, but suppose one of those couples relocates to West Virginia, which has a statutory ban on same-sex marriage. Does the state have the power to forcibly annul that marriage? And if so, does the couple now LOSE those federal benefits?

    Don’t fault US for continuing this fight. The Supreme Court left us no choice.

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Jaan Posted by on July 12, 2013. Filed under Legal News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

 

 

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