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US: Arkansas Attorney General supports equal marriage, but will continue to defend state’s ban

  • Arawra

    You’re not for equal marriage if you uphold ridiculous laws and unconstitutional legislation.

  • Brett Gibson

    Is he f*cking stupid on purpose?
    Absolute t*sser.

  • Jon (Malaysia)

    Sounds like King and Country, Right or Wrong. This “man” is putting his job before his personal integrity. Shame!

  • Truth

    Is this man an attorney? Seems like ‘milking the system’ is the only logical explanation for a completely illogical stance. I hope the electorate is making notes of all these tax-dollar wasters and that they will register their dissatisfaction at having their hard earned money frittered away, at the next election.

  • Steve_R

    On the one hand, I don’t want to offend any one! On the other hand I don’t want to offend any one! So clearly the man wants it both ways… to say and do the right thing by not manning up and having a conscience to do what is right for his fellow man because it might compromise his job security, when his lack of conscience should be used to question his suitability for the office he holds.

  • Aron Sasportas

    The report says that the position of the attorney general of Alabama “contrasts with Oregon’s Attorney General, Ellen Rosenblum, who declined to defend a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, leaving a case to overturn it unopposed.”

    Actually, his position contrasts with that of eight other attorneys general. See “Report 20 – So far, eight attorneys general in the United States have refused to defend bans on same-gender marriage” in “Equal Human Rights and Civil Rights for All Persons, No Matter Their Gender, No Matter Their Sexual Orientation: A Newsletter” (www.humciv.com).

    At least Dustin McDaniel has achieved semi-enlightenment.

  • Fjalur

    Some lawyers defend murderers and rapists

  • Maryland Kid

    I’m confused as to why people seem to be attacking this man’s character. When there is a constitutional challenge to a State law by a Federal Court, the State is obligated to defend that law before a judge. Traditionally, this duty falls to the Attorney General. In the event that the they choose not to do so, the responsibility falls to the next highest executive authorities, which are, in order, the governor and the legislature. If neither of them are willing to defend the law, than any private party that can establish standing may submit a defense. If none choose to do so, or those that do are incapable of adequately proving that they have standing, than the Federal Courts themselves are obligated to present a defense for the very law they are reviewing. That’s exactly what happened in Oregon, where the openly gay Federal Court Judge was forced to defend the same sex marriage ban, which he actually did extremely well. If anybody is interested in reading a very well thought out “devils advocate” stance on marriage equality, you ought to check out the legal opinion he submitted. Anyway, the point is that nobody seems to think that the Oregon judge is wishy washy or some kind of homophobe. Why do they think that about the Arkansas AG? Somebody has to defend this ban. Honestly, I’d rather it be the Democrat Attorney General than the Republican led legislature. This isn’t Oregon, where no other branch of the government is willing to oppose same-sex marriage. Not to mention that based on his comments so far, it looks like he’s trying to set up a nullification-style States Rights argument that the Federal Courts will be able to knock out of the park. Do you really think that any appointee of the Republican legislature would let the Courts make marriage equality legal so easily?

    Also, technically speaking, even if this is not his reasoning, his stance is not necessarily hypocritical. These Federal Court rulings are not being held over whether or not Marriage Equality should be considered Federal Law, but rather whether or not is is already established Federal Law under the Fourteenth Amendment. Personally, I think that the legal arguments for same-sex marriage are very convincing under the “equal protection” clause. However, it would not necessarily be contradictory for this guy to say that the ban on Same-Sex Marriage is wrong and ought to be made illegal, but that it is not unconstitutional and therefore needs to be settled by the legislature.

    • Cal

      Thank you. Very helpful and informative.

    • Philip Marks

      Yes, it is extremely unusual in overall history for a state attorney general not to defend state law as it is part of his duties to do just that, whether he agrees or not. Usually even a really bad law, say one allowing racial discrimination would get at least a first level defense.

    • Stefan

      Good post!

      Another thing of note is that unlike Oregon, where likely a majority of the voters are now pro-same-sex marriage, a majority is still likely against it in Arkansas.

      Therefore he has a majority backing him as he defends the law, unlike the Oregon Attorney General would have if she had done the same.

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