Loading
Bill to protect state definitions of marriage introduced
Credit: Mazur/catholicchurch.org.uk.
Credit: Mazur/catholicchurch.org.uk.

.- Lawmakers in Washington, D.C., have introduced bills bolstering the ability of individual states to declare what they will and will not recognize as a marriage and enforce that definition within state boundaries.

The State Marriage Defense Act of 2014 declares that in a given state, the term marriage will “not include any relationship which that State, territory, or possession does not recognize as a marriage, and the term ‘spouse’ shall not include an individual who is a party to a relationship that is not recognized as a marriage by that State, territory, or possession.”

The bill was introduced Feb. 14 by Senators Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) in the Senate, and Rep. Randy Weber (R-Texas) in the House of Representatives.

It comes in response to February statements by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who announced that the federal government will enforce the Supreme Court’s June 2013 ruling on a federal definition of marriage.

The high court’s ruling overturned parts of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, saying that rather than defining marriage at the federal level, the federal government must simply accept the unions recognized as marriages in each state.    

Holder stated that the Department of Justice will “not use state views as a basis to object to someone in a same-sex marriage” invoking rights to a variety of spousal benefits, even in “states where same-sex marriages are not recognized.”

Holder has also chosen to recognize marriage licenses given to same-sex couples in Utah during a short period in January 2014. The licenses were issued in response to a district judge’s order that “gay marriage” be recognized in the state. However, the Supreme Court then decided to halt the issuing of same-sex “marriage” licenses in Utah while the lower judge’s decision is undergoing appeal.

This joins a string of recent state-level judicial debates over whether states can set their own definitions for marriage.

In its 2013 ruling, the Supreme Court left it up to individual states to define marriage as they see fit. The court said the federal government must recognize the unions that are recognized in each state.

However, the Supreme Court’s ruling has been invoked several times as justification for rejecting state laws defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

In Virginia, a federal court recently struck down a voter-approved constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of man and woman, while Nevada has announced that it will no longer defend its ban on same-sex “marriage.”

In addition, a federal judge ruled Feb. 12 that Kentucky must recognize same-sex “marriages” granted by other states, despite the fact that Kentucky defines marriage as existing between only a man and a woman.

The State Marriage Defense Act would fight against rulings such as that in Kentucky, requiring “respect for State regulation of marriage” throughout the country and affirming states’ rights to define marriage within their borders.
 

Tags: Marriage

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
The tombs of the early Christians
Missionaries of Africa, called "the White Fathers"
Italian youth give testimony after mission to Peru
Interview with Iraqi Ambassador to the Holy See on the persecution of Christians
New book 'The Vatican unknown'
A Look at India from Rome
3D Church mapping
#PAUSEforPeace Initiative
Dedicating art to San Juan de la Cruz
A state without territory elects new government
The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Sep
2

Liturgical Calendar

September 2, 2014

Tuesday of the Twenty-Second Week in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Lk 4:31-37

Gospel
Date
09/02/14
09/01/14
08/31/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: 1 Cor 2:10B-16
Gospel:: Lk 4:31-37

Saint of the Day

Martyrs of September »

Saint
Date
08/31/14

Homily of the Day

Lk 4:31-37

Homily
Date
09/02/14
09/01/14
08/31/14
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: