Federal Court Strikes Down Alabama’s Same-Sex Marriage Ban

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Statement from Equality Alabama Board Chair Benn Cooper on Historic Ruling

Yesterday, U.S. District Judge Callie V.S. Granade ruled in favor of equality, striking down Alabama’s discriminatory constitutional amendment banning same-sex couples from marrying. Granade, appointed by President George W. Bush, stated in her ruling:

There is no law prohibiting infertile couples, elderly couples, or couples who do not wish to procreate from marrying. Nor does the state prohibit recognition of marriages between such couples from other states. The Attorney General fails to demonstrate any rational, much less compelling, link…the laws in question are an irrational way of promoting biological relationships in Alabama.

“Judge Granade’s ruling today affirms what we already know to be true – that all loving, committed Alabama couples should have the right to marry,” said HRC Legal Director Sarah Warbelow. “As the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to hear a landmark case on marriage equality, today’s ruling joins the dozens and dozens of others that have recognized that committed and loving gay and lesbian couples deserve equal treatment under the law.” [pullquote]”Alabama families—LGBT or not—imply want to provide for their children in a community that includes and affirms them, under laws that protect them equally and fairly,” said HRC Alabama director Ashley Jackson.[/pullquote]

“Alabama families—LGBT or not—imply want to provide for their children in a community that includes and affirms them, under laws that protect them equally and fairly,” said HRC Alabama director Ashley Jackson. “This ruling is a key step forward to achieving those equal dreams, and HRC Alabama congratulates all the advocates who made this day possible.”

There was no stay placed on the ruling. In the absence of a successful stay request by the state, couples can begin applying for marriage licenses as soon as clerks offices open. HRC congratulates the plaintiffs and attorneys involved in the case on this historic victory.

 


 

Statement from Equality Alabama on Landmark Marriage Equality Ruling

Friday evening, the United States District Court for the Southern District of Alabama struck down the ban on marriage equality in Alabama. This court clearly found that the Alabama Constitution and the Alabama Code containing these prohibitions are unconstitutional because they violated the due process clause and the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment.

For years, Equality Alabama has been a leader in moving this state forward, repeatedly questioning the ban on marriage equality and equal rights among all of its LGBT citizens. We expect and hope that the attorney general will uphold the decision to recognize same-sex marriage. These laws are irrational and finally have come to the forefront of this debate thanks to brave women like Cari Searcy and Kimberly McKeand.

We have received the direction from the District Court that the institution of marriage is a fundamental right and a vital personal right not to be denied to any person. I am positive with this landmark decision there will be many questions. Opportunities now present themselves to reinforce and bring Alabama among its fellow states where equality is undeniably a reality.

[From Press Releases]

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