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Miami – Three anti-gay groups Florida cannot intervene in a Florida lawsuit fighting for marriage equality, a circuit court judge ruled June 3. Judge Sarah Zabel ruled that Florida Family Action Inc., Florida Democratic League and People United to Lead the Struggle for Equality—all who support the state’s ban on marriage equality and were represented by the Liberty Counsel—cannot intervene in Pareto v. Ruvin.
That lawsuit, involving six same-sex couples, argues that Florida’s laws barring same-sex couples from marriage violate the United States Constitution by denying them the legal protections and equal dignity that having the freedom to marry provides. The plaintiffs are represented by the law firm Carlton Fields Jorden Burt, Elizabeth F. Schwartz, Mary B. Meeks, and the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR).
Judge Zabel found that the three groups hoping to intervene did not have concrete legal interest in the case because they “will not be directly and immediately affected if others enter into a same-sex marriage, or are prevented from entering into a same-sex marriage.”
On July 2, Judge Zabel will hear from attorneys who filed the lawsuit in January.
Victory! Bigotry in the face of progress doesn’t seem to be getting anyone very far.
Attorney General Pam Bondi filed a response today asking a federal judge to throw out a marriage equality case arguing that recognizing same-sex marriages performed in other states would“impose significant public harm”and“create significant problems for the state’s pension and health insurance programs.”
This response is deplorable. The only Florida families suffering harm are the LGBT families who continue to be discriminated against. Pam Bondi is on the wrong side of history and on the wrong side of Florida public opinion, which shows 57% of Floridians now favor marriage equality. Judges appointed by Republicans and Democrats alike have 19 times in a row come to the inescapable conclusion that such bans are wrong and constitutionally indefensible. Attorneys General in states across the country have upheld their duty to the U.S. constitution by refusing to defend a law that so clearly violates basic rights.
We need to take action now! Send an email to the Attorney General today and let her know she needs to stop defending the indefensible.Please click here to send her an email or call her office at 1-866-966-7226.
Contact FL Attorney General Pam Bondi and let her know what you think about her remarks!