Published On: Fri, Jul 18th, 2014

Republican appointed Florida judge rules gay marriage ban is unconstitutional

Thursday a Republican-appointed state judge struck down Florida’s ban on marriage for committed same-sex couples in what is now the 25th consecutive ruling by a federal or state court in favor of gay marriage.

Florida judge says the State's ban on gay marriage is unconstitutional facebook-gay-marriage-icon

Florida judge says the State’s ban on gay marriage is unconstitutional

Chief Circuit Judge Luis Garcia was appointed by former Governor Jeb Bush and reelected in 2002 and 2008. The case, Huntsman v. Heavilin, was filed in Key West, and as of now the ruling ony applies to Monroe County.

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, whose office defended the ban, filed an immediate notice of appeal, halting its implementation. “Finality on this constitutional issue must come from the U.S. Supreme Court,” said a prepared statement from her office.

On April 1, two Key West men, Aaron Huntsman and William Lee Jones applied for a marriage license at the Monroe County Clerk of Courts office and were denied. They hired a Key Largo divorce lawyer, who sued Clerk Amy Heavilin, demanding that she issue them a marriage license.

The case was assigned to Garcia, who ruled in the couple’s favor, ordering Heavilin to give them and “similarly situated same-sex couples” those licenses.

Garcia concluded the ban violates the rights of gays and lesbians under the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees due process and equal protection under the law.

“Like an unprecedented wave of state and federal courts across the country this past year, Judge Garcia did the right thing in affirming that committed same-sex couples share in the precious constitutional freedom to marry the person we love. Florida’s same-sex couples and their loved ones want what all families want: joy, protections, security, and respect – just what the freedom to marry is all about. We can now add Florida’s voice to the urgent need for the Supreme Court to take a freedom to marry case and bring the entire country to national resolution, ending marriage discrimination across America,” Evan Wolfson, president of Freedom to Marry, said in a released statement

Same-sex couples can marry and be recognized  in 19 states and the District of Columbia. The DOJ head Eric Holder stated earlier this week the Justice Department would seek a ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court to end all gay marriage bans.

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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  1. Miami-Dade judge rules against Florida’s gay marriage ban - The Global Dispatch says:

    […] Earlier this month the judge in Key West also ruled the ban on gay marriage was unconstitutional. More on that story HERE. […]

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