Friday, October 02, 2009

Judge Finds Texas Traditional Marriage Amendment Unconstitutional

What you can't get through the legislature, do through the courts.

A judge in Dallas has held that Texas' constitutional ban on gay marriage violates the 14th Amendment.

In an order signed Thursday in In the Matter of the Marriage of J.B. and H.B., 320th District Judge Tena Callahan held that Texas Constitution Article 1, §32(a), which provides that "marriage in this state consists only of the union of one man and one woman," violates the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Callahan further held that Texas Family Code §6.704, which addresses testimony of a man and wife in a suit for dissolution of a marriage, violates the 14th Amendment.

She prefaced those findings by writing that she was ruling "[o]n the limited issue of whether the Court has jurisdiction to divorce parties who have legally married in another jurisdiction and who otherwise meet the residency and other prerequisites required to file for a divorce in Dallas County, Texas." Callahan found that she has jurisdiction to hear a suit for divorce of two men legally married in another jurisdiction and struck the plea to the jurisdiction filed by the Texas Office of the Attorney General.

Of course, the couple does not meet the requirements to be married in Texas.