Judge: Keep Breaking the Law
A judge said San Francisco appears to be violating the law by issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples, but he declined Tuesday to order an immediate halt to the weddings.
A conservative group had asked Judge James Warren to immediately stop the weddings and void the 2,464 same-sex marriages performed in the city since Thursday. Instead, Warren issued a nonbinding order urging the city to halt the weddings, and told city lawyers to return March 29 to explain their legal position.
“We are extremely happy and gratified that a stay was not issued,” City Attorney Dennis Herrerra said.
Mayor Gavin Newsom said through a spokeswoman that the city would keep performing the marriages despite the judge’s urging.
“We will continue to issue marriage licenses until the court rules we can no longer do so,” spokeswoman Darlene Chiu said.
How about the fact that it’s against state law?
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger urged city officials to stop the same-sex weddings.
“I support all of California’s existing laws that provide domestic partnership benefits and protections,” Schwarzenegger said in a statement. “However, Californians spoke on the issue of same-sex marriage when they overwhelmingly approved California’s law that defines marriage as being between a man and a woman.”
That strikes me as the correct position to take, regardless of one’s views of gay marriage. If someone wants to challenge the constitutionality of Prop 22 in the courts, let them. But mayors aren’t allowed to flout the law. That’s a bad idea.