In a move sure to give Pam Bondi indigestion, the Florida Department of Management Services has announced same-sex spouses of state employees are now eligible for health insurance and retirement benefits.
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Florida's crusading attorney general Pam Bondi is reported to be lying low since the same-sex marriages began in Florida. She even skipped a prayer breakfast arranged by one of the architects of Florida's 2008 same-sex marriage ban. Her office claims she had a sick family member, but Attorney General Bondi had no problem appearing for her inauguration celebration later in the day, which, by the way, was held across the street from the Leon County Courthouse, where just three hours earlier same-sex couples began applying for marriage licenses.
“Loving couples getting married across Florida overshadowed the inauguration,” mused Nadine Smith, executive director of Equality Florida. “It was poetry.”
Florida Governor Rick Scott has washed his hands of the marriage issue, delegating the authority to decide how to proceed to Attorney General Bondi. But ever since the stay was lifted and the weddings began, Bondi has been avoiding reporters. The one time she was cornered, on a walk from her swearing-in back to her office, she said only:
“My solicitor general is looking at it, and we’re still hopeful that the U.S. Supreme Court will hear the case.”
“Employees whose marriages will be legally recognized in Florida as of Jan. 6, 2015, have a qualifying status change event window between Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2015, through Friday, March 6, 2015, to enroll in a family plan.”
“This is what our case was all about, affecting the lives of real families and real people in Florida,” crowed Simon. “It was always all about protecting and strengthening families. Health insurance, pensions, all the things for which opposite-sex couples get married to and enjoy. They are implementing what they've been ordered to do.”