Texas Leaders Defend Texas Marriage Laws

Aug 7, 2014
Family, Faith, Legal & Academic Leaders Support Texas Marriage Laws

This week, at Texas Values’ office in Austin, a diverse group of state leaders held a press conference to show their support for Texas’ effort to defend our marriage laws defining marriage as between one man and one woman. Texas Values led the coordination effort that saw numerous legal briefs filed with the Federal Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in support of Texas marriage laws this week. Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott filed the state’s appellate brief last week in support of Texas marriage laws. Read more.

Earlier this year, a federal court judge, Orlando Garcia, struck down the Texas Constitution’s provision that defines marriage as between one man and one woman, and forced Texas to legally approve “gay marriage” but Judge Garcia immediately “stayed” his own decision. Texas immediately sought an appeal of the decision. The Texas Constitution’s definition of marriage was approved by 1.7 million Texans (76% of the voters at the polls) in 2005, after the language passed the Texas House and Senate by a bipartisan 2/3rd’s majority earlier in the same year. In stark contrast, recently, LGBT supporters were only able to get 5,000 signatures for a petition to redefine marriage in Texas.

Click here to watch the full press conference and click here to view news coverage of the press conference.

Numerous Legal Briefs Argue Marriage Should be Upheld in Texas

Numerous state and national organizations and leaders filed legal briefs this week in support of Texas’ marriage laws, including Texas Values, The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, Professor Robert P. George (Princeton) and Ryan T. Anderson, authors of What is Marriage? Man and Woman: A Defense, The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, University of Texas Professor Mark Regnerus, and 23 other law and policy professors including scholars from Notre Dame Law School, University of Virginia, Princeton University, and many more. Below are just a few excerpts from some of the briefs.

Texas Values’ brief:
“Marriage laws have been, and continue to be, about serving society’s child-centered purposes, like connecting children to their biological mother and father, and avoiding the negative outcomes often experienced by children raised outside a stable family unit led by their biological parents. Redefining marriage would transform the institution, thereby threatening its ability to serve those interests.”

Dr. Robert P. George (Princeton) and Ryan T. Anderson’s brief:
“After all, law shapes culture, which shapes people’s behavior. Marriage law shapes what people expect of themselves and others with respect to marriage. So if the law defines marriage as, essentially, romantic-emotional union, people can be expected to internalize this view. But because this view removes any basis of principle for norms like permanence and exclusivity, and promotes an ideology of expressive individualism that prioritizes personal emotional fulfillment, its prevalence is likely to further destabilize the institution of marriage across society…Indeed, leading LGBT activists increasingly agree that redefining marriage would undermine its norms.”

The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty’s brief:
“..the lower courts’ decision to impose same-sex marriage by judicial decree will automatically trigger civil liability for religious people and institutions, and will expose them to significant government penalties. Church-state scholars on all sides of the same-sex marriage debate agree that these conflicts will come unless mitigating religious conscience protections are enacted… the Court should recognize that federal judicial intervention will cut off the democratic process of debate regarding religious liberty protections and same-sex marriage.”

View PDFs of all the legal briefs filed at the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in support of Texas’ marriage laws here.

Abortion Advocates Attack HB 2 in Court

Pro-abortion groups were in court again this week challenging provisions of Texas’ Pro-Life Omnibus Law, HB 2. Planned Parenthood and the Center for Reproductive Rights announced the new legal attack in April targeting the provision that requires abortion facilities to meet the same safety requirements that other surgical centers in Texas are already required to meet. This new attack comes on the heels of the Fifth Circuit already upholding two provision of HB 2 earlier this year. These lawsuits continue to demonstrate that the pro-abortion side seeks to protect their industry over commonsense safety regulations.

Sign the Texas Marriage Declaration

Around the country an out of control and activist federal government and judiciary is engaged in a massive state-by-state effort to redefine marriage. These radical efforts threaten the rule of law and Texans’ fundamental right to self-governance. Further, those seeking to redefine marriage want to force everyone to celebrate the homosexual lifestyle and seek to trample the religious liberty rights of individuals, businesses, and churches. Join the fight for marriage – sign the Texas Marriage Declaration today.

 

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