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Florida Attorney General Suggests Gays Don’t Have ‘Stable And Enduring Family Units’

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Yesterday, Attorney General Pam Bondi came under fire for her defense of Florida‘s ban on same-sex marriage, which claimed that recognizing out-of-state legal civil same-sex marriages would “impose significant public harm” and play havoc with existing marriage laws in the Sunshine State.

Those four words, “impose significant public harm,” earned Bondi, a 48-year old Tea Party Republican who has been married three times, scorn and rebuke from several Florida LGBT organizations and countless news outlets, including The New Civil Rights Movement.

LOOK: Gay Marriage Would ‘Impose Significant Public Harm’ Says Attorney General Married Three Times

But further examination of the same court filing, which claims same-sex marriage will “impose significant public harm” shows Bondi also suggests that same-sex couples don’t create stable or enduring homes.

The Tampa Bay Times reports that “[l]ost in the uproar was another statement, buried deeper in the response, that sounded more potentially inflammatory. In a section on marriage’s historical definition, Bondi seemed to argue that unions between men and women produce more favorable environments for children.” That is, of course, a claim no reputable scientific study has found to be true. 

LOOK: Gay Dads’ Brains Work Like Mom And Dad Combined

“Florida’s marriage laws,” Bondi wrote in the court filing (PDF), “have a close, direct, and rational relationship to society’s legitimate interest in increasing the likelihood that children will be born to and raised by the mothers and fathers who produced them in stable and enduring family units.”

The procreation argument is not a valid legal argument to deny marriage. But, regardless, many same-sex couples do raise their own biological children — at least of one of the members of the couple. Many gay same-sex couples raise the children one of the fathers may have had in a previous marriage, for instance. Many lesbian same-sex couples raise the children one of the mothers may have had in a previous marriage, too. And same-sex parents also adopt the children sometimes abandoned by those “mothers and fathers who produced them” in non-stable and non-enduring family units. There are, of course, other methods for couples to conceive.

Bondi also argues that excluding same-sex couples from marriage might promote a legitimate governmental purpose.

The plaintiffs simply are wrong to argue that the exclusion of same-sex couples from the definition of marriage must further a legitimate state interest. A classification will be upheld where “the inclusion of one group promotes a legitimate governmental purpose, and the addition of other groups would not.”

Here’s Bondi’s argument, filed in the combined case of Brenner v. Scott and Grimsley v. Scott, that recognizing same-sex marriages performed out of state would “impose significant public harm”:

“The Court should also deny the preliminary injunction motions because there is no likelihood of success on the merits, there is no immediacy requiring a preliminary injunction and disrupting Florida’s existing marriage laws would impose significant public harm.”

Of course, it’s arguable there is not one single truth in that statement. Every same-sex marriage case since the supreme Court ruled on DOMA less than a year ago has been won by those seeking equality, and even federal judges have written that imposing stays — delays — on those rulings would cause harm. Worse, the fact that an entire class of people have been denied their rights for generations far outweighs whatever administrative changes the State of Florida might need to perform. And whatever financial costs the State incurs as a result of extending marriage — and equal rights — to same-sex couples is outweighed by the fact that same-sex couples are legal tax-paying citizens and have paid into that system AG Bondi wants to exclude them from now accessing. In short, gays lesbian, and bisexual Floridians have been supporting the marriages of heterosexual couples for centuries. It’s time they were allowed to enter into the institution.

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‘I Will Not Stand by Silently’: Sotomayor Blasts SCOTUS Conservatives Over Their Latest Attack on Abortion Rights

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“The Court may look the other way, but I cannot.”

Justice Sonia Sotomayor expressed outrage at her conservative Supreme Court colleagues Thursday afternoon, after the six right wing jurists went one step further in attacking the constitutional guarantee of abortion.

Voting 6-3 against a women’s health care provider the Court denied a request by Texas Women’s Health, which provides abortion services, to change jurisdictions, which according to Justice Sotomayor the Court should have done.

“The lawsuit is now stalled with the Texas Supreme Court,” Rewire News reports.

Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern, a Supreme Court expert calls Sotomayor’s dissent “stunning.”

“This case is a disaster for the rule of law and a grave disservice to women in Texas, who have a right to control their own bodies,” Sotomayor writes. “I will not stand by silently as a State continues to nullify this constitutional guarantee. I dissent.”

She begins her dissent by explaining the case:

“It has been over four months since Texas Senate Bill 8 (S. B. 8) took effect. The law immediately devastated access to abortion care in Texas through a complicated private-bounty-hunter scheme that violates nearly 50 years of this Court’s precedents.”

“Today, for the fourth time, this Court declines to protect pregnant Texans from egregious violations of their constitutional rights. One month after directing that the petitioners’ suit could proceed in part, the Court countenances yet another violation of its own commands. Instead of stopping a Fifth Circuit panel from indulging Texas’ newest delay tactics, the Court allows the State yet again to extend the deprivation of the federal constitutional rights of its citizens through procedural manipulation. The Court may look the other way, but I cannot.”

In response the Guttmacher Institute, an organization focused on sexual and reproductive health and rights, accused the Supreme Court of “once again putting ideology over the rule of law.”

 

Image via Shutterstock

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Ivanka Trump Responds to Committee’s Invite by Saying She Called for End to Violence – Leaves Out ‘Patriots’ Part

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Ivanka Trump is responding to her invitation from the January 6 Committee by issuing a statement that is being seen suggesting she has no intention of accepting. Earlier Thursday the Committee sent the former First Daughter and White House senior advisor a lengthy 11-page letter asking for her voluntary cooperation.

A statement from her spokesperson given to CNN White House Correspondent Kate Bennett references a tweet posted by Ivanka Trump the day of the attack on the Capitol – a tweet she was forced to delete after massive outrage.

“As the Committee already knows, Ivanka did not speak at the January 6 rally,” the statement reads. “As she publicly stated at 3:15pm, ‘any security breach or disrespect to our law enforcement is unacceptable. The violence must stop immediately.”

But in the actual Ivanka Trump called the insurrectionists “American Patriots,” as CNN reported that day:

 

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Georgia Prosecutor Asks to Convene Special Grand Jury to Investigate Donald Trump’s Alleged Election Interference

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A Georgia county district attorney has requested to convene a special grand jury to assist in her investigation of Donald Trump‘s alleged election interference.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis in a letter to the county’s Superior Court chief judge writes that her office “has received information indicating a reasonable probability that the State of Georgia’s administration of elections in 2020, including the State’s election of the President of the United States, was subject to possible criminal disruptions,” according to the Associated Press.

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (photo) was forced to release audio of then-President Trump appearing to intimidate him into fixing the election in his favor.

Trump, in the audio, can be heard berating and threatening the Republican Secretary of State, demanding he “recalculate” the losing election results and “find 11,780 votes” for him, which would have enabled Trump to falsely be declared the winner. Raffensberger refused.

“So look. All I want to do is this,” Trump told Raffensberger. “I just want to find 11,780 votes, which is one more than we have. Because we won the state.”

“There’s no way I lost Georgia,” he added, falsely. “There’s no way. We won by hundreds of thousands of votes.”

Willis told the AP the scope of her investigation “includes — but is not limited to — a Jan. 2, 2021, phone call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, a November 2020 phone call between U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham and Raffensperger, the abrupt resignation of the U.S. attorney in Atlanta on Jan. 4, 2021, and comments made during December 2020 Georgia legislative committee hearings on the election.”

 

 

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