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As 32 States Now Recognize Gay Marriage, Pam Bondi Files Latest Delaying Tactic

| October 26, 2014

Pam Bondi files an amicus brief as a friend of homophobia. (FWC)

Pam Bondi files an amicus brief as a friend of homophobia. (FWC)

Same-sex couples should continue to be prevented from getting married in Florida until a legal battle plays out about the constitutionality of the state’s gay-marriage ban, Attorney General Pam Bondi said in a federal-court filing Friday.

The filing came after supporters of same-sex marriage this month requested that U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle lift a stay that has at least temporarily blocked gay marriages from going forward. Bondi argued that the stay should remain in place until the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals can rule on the constitutionality of the voter-approved ban.

“There is a great public interest in stability of the law. If Florida’s law is going to change in the substantial manner plaintiffs seek, it should be only after the plaintiffs’ legal claims undergo appellate review,” the filing said.

Siding with same-sex couples in two combined cases, Hinkle ruled in August that the gay-marriage ban was unconstitutional, but he also placed the stay on the decision. The state subsequently filed an appeal that remains pending at the Atlanta-based appellate court.

Since Hinkle’s ruling, however, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to take up similar cases from other states — effectively clearing the way for same-sex marriages in those states. That spurred the request to Hinkle to lift the stay in Florida.

After Friday’s filing, American Civil Liberties Union of Florida attorney Daniel Tilley issued a statement saying the group hopes Hinkle will reject Bondi’s request to keep the stay in place.

“It’s disappointing that Attorney General Bondi and Gov. Rick Scott have chosen to continue to swim against the tide of inevitable history and block Florida families from having the protections that come with being married,” said Tilley, who represents same-sex couples who live in Florida but were married in other states. Florida does not recognize those marriages.

State circuit-court judges in South Florida have joined Hinkle in ruling that the ban, approved by voters in 2008, is unconstitutional. Bondi last week filed a document in a state appellate court arguing the Florida Supreme Court should decide the constitutional question — an issue she also raised in Friday’s federal court filing.

“The United States Supreme Court having passed on an opportunity to provide a decision with national effect, the state has now moved to have the issue resolved in the Florida Supreme Court with statewide effect,” Bondi’s filing said. “It is in the public interest to at least allow Florida’s highest court an opportunity to review the issue before ordering changes to Florida’s law.”

–Jim Saunders, News Service of Florida


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20 Responses for “As 32 States Now Recognize Gay Marriage, Pam Bondi Files Latest Delaying Tactic”

  1. Whatever says:

    Get a life and read the bible-hello

    • Kevin says:

      The Bible has absolutely no legal authority in this country. It’s only relevance in this case is the fact that it has been and continues to be grossly misused as justification for passing laws that trample on the constitutional rights of gay Americans….just as it has been and continues to be misused as justification for trampling on the rights of women and racial minorities.

  2. sunandsand says:

    It makes no difference what society tries to change, the fact remains Marriage is between a Man and a Woman. Immorality is immorality. It is not a bigotry thing, it is not a hatred thing. If a man prefers to be sexual with another man, if a woman prefers to be sexual with another woman, then do it, but do not expect laws to change, due to your immorality, it isn’t natural. If I love my pet, would I expect the laws to change and allow me to Marry my pet and be sexual with it? Wrong is wrong, no matter how you try to sugar coat it.

    • John Smallberries says:

      You see, it’s hilarious statements like this one that makes reading the flaglerlive comments section so entertaining. If you’re going to bring laws from Leveticus into the argument (and the last time I heard, the book of Leveticus wasn’t enshrined in the constitution) then you might want to also mention the other laws within it that are worth bringing up. Like Leveticus 19:15, which forbids perverting justice and showing partiality to either the poor or the rich. Funny how conservative christians overlook that one.

    • Kevin says:

      Sunandsand, my marriage is between two men. You can close your eyes and shove your fingers in your ears all you want, but my marriage is not going to go away. More importantly, neither is my constitutional right to have my marriage treated equally. As for your dog, when you can convince a court that animals can give rational consent to a legally binding contract, let us know. Otherwise you’re just tilting at windmills.

    • Nancy N says:

      You bigots can trot that “beastiality” boogie man out as many times as you want but it still won’t hold water.

      Your pet isn’t a legal member of society with the right to vote, own property and all other civil rights afforded other human beings – except the right to marry.

    • Norman Walker says:

      You are wrong on so many levels. The laws have changed, and will continue to change. This is because bigotry and intolerance are not condoned in the United States of America. And wherever the laws have changed, the legal definition of marriage has also changed to include gay people, whose civil rights have been continuously denied for centuries. Your religious viewpoint is yours to keep, and your church will still be able to discriminate as much as it wishes within the confines of it’s own doors. However, you do not have the right to deny equal protection under the law to gay Americans. My right to “civil” marriage is none of your concern, and has nothing whatsoever to do with “religion”.

  3. barbie says:

    Bondi’s got to go. In addition to the fact that she’s hateful, spiteful and ignorant of a lot of Constitutional law, she also gives women a bad name in general.

  4. Nancy N says:

    This is nothing but election politics. Scott and Bondi are afraid to lose the motivation of their base to vote if they acquiesce on this issue the week before the election where they are both on the ballot. They know the handwriting is on the wall that they will lose eventually but they are hoping to wring one last election win out of dragging their heels.

  5. Sherry Epley says:

    Bondi is especially embarrassing to me, and to all blonde women. That uncaring “Barbie” of a Republican poster female needs to go! Hopefully the “open minded” people of Florida will turn out to vote these horrible people OUT of OFFICE!

  6. Crybabies says:

    Unfortunately, one day GLBT’s will be considered the same as heterosexual couples. Until then let’s prolong it as long as we can…

    • Kevin says:

      Thanks for proving the ban on same-sex marriage was based on pure animus against gay people and not some noble attempt to “protect marriage.”

    • This case could possible have an impact far beyond Florida in the future:

      1. If the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals were to rule in favor of marriage equality as the 4th, 7th and 10th Circuit Courts did in mid-2014, then the State of Florida would be almost certain to appeal the case to the U.S. Supreme Court. However, when the previous three Circuit Courts’ rulings were appealed, the high court refused to accept the appeals. This caused same-sex marriage to be legalized — or sent on the road towards legalization — in 11 states. If the high court is consistent and refuses to accept the appeal from the 11th Circuit then marriage equality would be settled law in Florida. Further it would probably be legalized in the other states under the jurisdiction of the 11th Circuit: Alabama and Georgia.

      2. If the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals were to rule against marriage equality, then the U.S. Supreme Court would be faced with a situation that it might find intolerable: the 4th, 7th and 10th Circuit Courts having ruled for marriage equality and the 11th Circuit Court ruling against. Under such a circumstance, the high court would probably accept the appeal of the Florida case in late 2015, hold hearings in early 2016, and issue a ruling in mid-2016 which might legalize same-sex marriage across the entire United States.

      There was an ancient Chinese curse that said: “May you live in interesting times.” Times are certainly interesting in the field of marriage equality

  7. Pogo says:

    A twice divorced shacked up ( Linda Tripp impersonator is defending us from The Gay!!!

    All is fair in Love Floriduh Style…

  8. Edman says:

    Why do conservatives demand to determine what is right for everyone else but decry any perceived actions that they believe inhibit their “rights”? They rail against big government except when they or their states are the beneficiaries of the largess. They demad low taxes but scream when their pet causes are not funded. They quote the bible but are shocked when the strict interpretations are not in line with their prejudices. They need to mind their own business and stay out of everyone else’s.

  9. Seminole Pride says:

    AIDS is the reason their should not be same sex marriage. Why do something that could be deadly to you .

    • Nancy N says:

      Really? We’re back to that crap again? Ok, if you want to go down that road with that argument, then let’s also outlaw:

      * Fertility treatments
      * Heterosexual Sex
      * Food
      * Driving

      Because all of them can lead to or raise the risk of things that can kill you.

      Also virtually all gay people who get AIDS are men. What then is your justification for not letting lesbians marry (if we humor your ridiculous argument for a moment)?

  10. Well... says:

    Who cares what any of you think really? At the end of the day, it is opinion versus opinion and no one is right or wrong. If you, as a man, don’t want to marry a man then don’t marry one. Those who render judgement on others are just as “immoral” as those they are judging so why give yourselves ulcers? It doesn’t change your life in anyway if a man wants to marry a man or a woman wants to marry a woman. You are going through your life, making your decisions and doing what you think is best for your life…the key wording here is YOUR LIFE, so why burden yourself by worrying about what other people want to do with their lives?

  11. Groot says:

    I don’t consider myself homophobic at all. I worked with and have had many gay friends. It comes back to if you mate a man and a woman, you may get a child but if a man and a man mate or a woman and a woman mate well, you get nothing. But, that said, a very significant number of children are born out of wedlock so, does it really matter? I know this, based on the gay relationships I was around, especially women, the divorce courts will be working over time about 6 months or so after gay marriage goes into effect. Also, given the situation in the middle east, the economy, ebola, health care, kids shooting kids in schools and ISIL to name a few issues, is this issue really worth bothering with? Let them get married and get divorced just like the rest of us. Whatever the cheapest solution is, just do that. Who cares?

    • Nancy N. says:

      The “marriage is for children so we have to keep it heterosexual” argument is a complete fallacy. Old people and infertile people are allowed to marry. People who don’t want children are allowed to marry.

      So explain to me again how a 70 year old man and woman are allowed to marry “for the children?”

      You think gay marriages are unstable? I know plenty of gay couples who’ve been together a very long time. I also know plenty of straight couples who divorced after extremely short marriages. Even people like our hypocrite attorney general Pam Bondi who’ve been divorced more than once. Kim Kardashian got divorced after 72 days. Britney Spears was married for a weekend once. I could go on…bottom line, despite all of that, I don’t hear anyone saying straight people should be banned from marrying, despite our terrible track record with the institution.

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