Anti-LGBT Resolution Meant to Intimidate Judiciary in Arkansas
June 20, 2014 by HRC staff
Post submitted by Hubert Tate, former HRC Press Secretary, Project One America
The Arkansas Legislative Council has passed a resolution in support of Amendment 83, an amendment to the Arkansas Constitution that makes it unconstitutional for the state to recognize or perform same-sex marriages or civil unions. While non-binding, the resolution strongly urges the Arkansas Supreme Court to uphold the ban against marriage equality. Human Rights Campaign President and Arkansas native Chad Griffin made the following statement:
"The Arkansas Legislative Council can't intimidate the judiciary into ignoring the fact that gay and lesbian couples have a constitutional right to marry, “said Griffin. “This is a matter of basic fairness and shouldn't be subject to political gamesmanship.”
The resolution is in response to a ruling by Pulaski County Circuit Judge Chris Piazza who struck down the state’s ban on same sex marriage in May in Wright v. Arkansas-- led by attorneys Cheryl Maples and Jack Wagoner. The decision allowed hundreds of Arkansas gay and lesbian couples to get married before the Arkansas Supreme Court issued a stay. The Attorney General has appealed Wright to the state Supreme Court.
Republican Arkansas State Senator Jason Rapert sponsored the resolution, presenting it initially in May. The measure required a six-day notice to be considered, but Rapert wanted to suspend the rules needing a two-thirds vote. It failed.
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