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Category Archives: Law

Even From Thousands of Miles Away, Marriage Supporters Are Marching

When we talk about the effects of same-sex marriage, we always come back to our two highest values–faith and family. It seems so obvious that the destruction of traditional marriage is yet another blow to the black family, with untold harm for our children. And yet, there are some who still don’t understand the importance of this issue. ~CAAP

ThinkstockPhotos-122412432Even those who can't make it to Washington D.C. on April 25th will be supporting the March for Marriage from thousands of miles away!

ARV Tea Party is sponsoring a March for Marriage set in Russellville, Arkansas. Beginning at 3 pm, the group will march to the Pope Country Courthouse to show their support for traditional marriage. Once everyone arrives at the courthouse, Diane Owens, from the Coalition of African American Pastors (CAAP) will be the featured speaker.

For those in Arkansas who can’t make it to the DC March, you can visit the event’s Facebook page here and check out out CAAP’s website for more information on their work. As demonstrated in the video below, CAAP shows their amazing support for the true definition of marriage every day!

Should Christian Business Owners Refuse, or Reallocate?

ThinkstockPhotos-459568745Across our nation, we hear news about Christian florists, bakeries, and now, a pizzeria being forced to close after turning down business pertaining to same-sex wedding ceremonies. And what has ensued is an affront to America's liberty laws: Christians are being slammed with lawsuits under the pretense of “discrimination” when in reality, it is the LGBT activists who champion and practice discrimination.

Fr. John Zuhisdorf suggests that Christians utilize a different tactic. When a same-sex couple approaches a Christian business owner for a same-sex wedding ceremony, Fr. Zuhisdorf suggests that Christian business owners accept the business, but donate every dollar of the profits to support pro-marriage and religious liberty causes.

In his blog post, Fr. Zuhisdorf explains:

Tell them that the food and services will be just fine.  And then inform them that all of the money that they pay for the services will be donated to a traditional pro-family lobby.   If it is something like catering, where your employees have to be there to provide services, tell them that all your people will smile, be professional, and everyone of them will be wearing crucifixes and have the Holy Family embroidered on their uniforms.  Then show them pictures of your uniforms.  When the truck pulls up, speakers will be playing Immaculate Mary.  Show them the truck and play the music.

“Oh, you would be offended by that?  I’m so sorry.  You approached us because we are Christians. Right?  We are happy to provide services for you and we are grateful that you chose to come to our Christian catering business.  We just want to be of help.”

Then tell them that you will take out an ad in the paper to let everyone know what you did with their money, thanking them by name for their business so that you could make the contribution.

I suspect this approach, if adopted far and wide, would put an end to attacks on Christian businesses.

It certainly is an interesting approach, and if practiced, would undoubtedly generate many more news stories. As our nation battles to protect religious liberty, it is not a bad idea to have multiple tactics at the ready. Business is business, but marriage is the foundation of our society. Ultimately, when it comes to marriage, there can be no compromise.

National Organization for Marriage Files Brief With US Supreme Court Detailing Public Support for Marriage; Tells Court There Is No Federal Constitutional Right to Same-Sex Marriage

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 7, 2015
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"The notion...that the American people have significantly altered their views on same-sex marriage...is simply not true."
— Frank Schubert, NOM Political Director —

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Washington, D.C. — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) and its political director, Frank Schubert, have filed a joint amicus brief with the US Supreme Court contesting the notion advanced by many gay activists that the nation has undergone a rapid change of opinion and now supports same-sex marriage. They also warned the court that a decision to impose same-sex marriage on the nation despite the votes of over 50 million people in nearly three-dozen states would galvanize opposition to same-sex marriage, just like the Roe decision galvanized opposition to abortion.

"The notion advanced in some corridors that the American people have significantly altered their views on same-sex marriage in recent years to the point that large majorities now support a redefinition of marriage and therefore would readily accept a mandate from this Court imposing same-sex marriage on the nation is simply not true," said Frank Schubert, NOM's national political director.

Schubert examined more than one dozen recent public opinion surveys and found that they fell into one of four categories:

  1. Those showing majority support for traditional marriage;
  2. Those showing support for same-sex marriage dropping;
  3. Those showing plurality support for one side or another, but not majority support; and
  4. Those showing majority support for same-sex marriage.

Schubert directed the Supreme Court's attention to the results of the February 2015 survey conducted by WPA Opinion Research for the Family Research Council, showing that "53% of Americans agreed that marriage should be defined only as the union of one man and one woman." These results were consistent with two 2012 surveys conducted for NOM by The Polling Company. Schubert also pointed out two recent surveys that showed a drop in support for same-sex marriage — Rasmussen Reports (February 2015) and Pew Research Center (September 2014). Rasmussen reported that, "Support for gay marriage has fallen to its lowest level in over a year," noting that support had dropped by 6% since December 2014, "tying the low last reached in late 2013." Rasmussen found that 42% of Americans support same-sex marriage, but 44% oppose it. Pew's survey found that support for same-sex marriage had dropped by five points in the previous seven months, while opposition increased by two points.

Schubert also reviewed surveys that show the country split on the issue of same-sex marriage, including a poll conducted by the Associated Press/GfK (February 2015 — 35% favor same-sex marriage while 31% oppose it), Relationships in America Survey (February 2014 — 42% of adults age 18-60 support same-sex marriage while 31% oppose it) along with the February 2015 Rasmussen Report survey showing results at 42% for and 44% against same-sex marriage.

Schubert also addressed several national surveys purporting to show majority support for same-sex marriage, including the Gallup Survey (May 2014) which claims that 55% of Americans believe that "marriages between same-sex couples should be recognized as valid with the same rights as traditional marriages." 42% disagree. Schubert noted that the Gallup survey suffers from two flaws. First, it connects the marriage issue with "rights," making it difficult to separate out the issue of redefining marriage from the general issue of gay rights. Second, Gallup engages in a practice called "priming" by asking a leading question about whether gay relationships should be legal (they have been legal for decades) designed to elicit support for same-sex couples right before asking respondents about support for same-sex marriage.

Schubert said, "[T]he most accurate statement of public opinion on the issue of the definition of marriage is that Americans have conflicting viewpoints on the issue. Neither side has "won" the debate, but one thing is clear: It is a debate that should be resolved by voters and legislators through the democratic process, not one that is truncated and its outcome mandated by [the Supreme] Court.

The brief was authored by John Eastman, chairman of the National Organization for Marriage, Director of the Claremont Institute's Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence and former Dean and current constitutional law professor at the Chapman University Fowler Law School. Eastman pointed out in the brief that the definition of marriage has been on statewide ballots 39 times in 35 states and that over 84 million votes have been cast on the issue, with over $216 million raised by the competing sides. He said, "Having failed in their efforts to redefine marriage through the democratic process and to change the policy judgments of their fellow citizens by persuasion, petitioners and their supporters seek to have this Court dramatically change both the definition and the purpose of marriage by judicial decree."

Eastman argued that there is no "fundamental right" or legal basis for the Court to impose same-sex marriage on the nation. "Fundamental rights...do not simply materialize from the Hollywood set of Will and Grace or because a President has "evolved" on this issue. Were it otherwise, the result would not be a "subtle" transfer of policy-making authority from the people to the court, but a broadside against democratic self-governance. This Court has never taken such a step, and in fact declined to do so when first asked forty years ago. It should not do so now," he wrote.

To schedule an interview with Frank Schubert, political director of the National Organization for Marriage, or John Eastman, chairman of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), [email protected], or Matille Thebolt, [email protected], at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

Dump Angie: Take Action Right Now to Promote Religious Liberty



Dear Marriage Supporter,

Many times we at NOM are asked by supporters what can one person do to stand for marriage or stand for religious freedom. With the March for Marriage around the corner in Washington DC, on April 25th that's one important thing you can do. But right now we have an opportunity to highlight to the business community the effects of attacking religious liberty.

Here's what you can do now.

As you know Angie's List has said that they are halting a $40 million expansion of their facility in Indiana to protest passage of the common sense religious liberty bill that simply gives people of faith their day in court to fight government from coercing them to participate in something they oppose on religious grounds. Angie's List thinks attacking the rights of Christians and other faiths is smart business. It's time for you to do four simple things that will take less than five minutes but will send a big message.

If you have an Angie's list account:

1. Sign into your account. Leave one last review on Angie's List of any company you like that makes clear that you are leaving Angie's List because they oppose religious freedom. Encourage everyone else to do this same.

2. At the right hand bottom corner of the page is a "Contact Us" button. Click that button. On the next page is a drop down menu under, "My Question is About" select "Membership Cancellation." Under subject write in "Cancel My Membership." Finally, write in the question box that you are cancelling Angie's List because of their efforts to oppose Religious Liberty legislation in Indiana. Ask that your account be canceled immediately.

3. Sign the petition here and make it clear that you have canceled your account, so we can keep track of how many people have cancelled. THIS IS CRITICAL.

4. Finally, ask all of you friends and family to do the same.

If you do not have an Angie's List account:

1. Sign this petition here.

2. Ask all of your friends and family to do the same.

We have to make clear to big businesses that we will not be bullied, forced to let the government coerce our participation in something we find that violates our religious principles. We have a chance to show the power of people of faith working together. This is your chance to do something for religious liberty and marriage. Let's do this together!

Thanks,

Brian S Brown

National Organization for Marriage Calls on Indiana Legislature to Defeat Legislation That Guts Religious Liberty Law and Will Result in People of Faith Being Forced To Participate In Activities That Violate Their Beliefs or Risk Severe Punishment

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 2, 2015
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"This supposed 'fix' is a complete abandonment of principle that rewards the radical left and celebrities like Miley Cyrus who grossly mischaracterized the Religious Liberty Restoration Act passed last week." — Brian Brown, NOM president —

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Washington, D.C. — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) today announced its strong opposition to new legislation designed to "fix" legislation passed last week to protect the right of people of faith to defend against governmental actions seeking to force them to participate in activities like same-sex 'marriage' ceremonies that violate their religious beliefs.

"This supposed 'fix' is a complete abandonment of principle that rewards the radical left and celebrities like Miley Cyrus who grossly mischaracterized the Religious Liberty Restoration Act passed last week," said Brian Brown, NOM's president. "It's like paying ransom to a captor, and will put people of faith in the crosshairs of gay activists who will use this new legislation as a weapon to force people of faith to participate in same-sex 'marriage' ceremonies and other activities that violate their deeply held religious beliefs. Refusing to be part of a same-sex 'wedding' is not discrimination but this new legislation treats it as such."

Across the country, people of faith have been targeted by gay marriage activists seeking to force them to participate in same-sex 'wedding' ceremonies. Photographers, inn keepers, bakers, florists, venue operators, and many others have been threatened with lawsuits, fines and even the threat of losing their livelihood if they don't agree to violate their beliefs and celebrate a gay 'wedding.' The state Attorney General of Washington has targeted a 70-year old grandmother who operates a small florist company with a lawsuit where he says he may seek to take her business and all her assets unless she drops her religious objections to same-sex 'marriage.' The Indiana Religious Liberty Restoration Act was written to give such people the ability to raise a defense in court, which the government would then have to show that it has a compelling interest in forcing the person into such activities.

"People should not be forced to engage in activity that violates their deeply held religious beliefs unless there is an overriding, compelling government interest to do so, such as maintenance of public safety," Brown said. "Just yesterday, Rasmussen Reports released the results of a survey showing that 70% of Americans believe that Christian business owners like wedding photographers should be able to turn down working at a gay 'wedding.' Other polls have shown over 80% support for this freedom. Yet some Indiana legislators are prepared to sacrifice people of faith on the altar of political correctness in order to reward the radical left for a misleading PR campaign that misrepresents the real issues. We call on this legislation to be defeated, and for Governor Pence to veto it if it is passed."

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray, [email protected], or Matille Thebolt, [email protected], at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

For the Sake of Tolerance, Protect Religious Liberty

“Religious-liberty protections are one way of achieving civil peace even amid disagreement. The United States is a pluralistic society. To protect that pluralism and the rights of all Americans, of whatever faith they may practice, religious-liberty laws are good policy. Liberals committed to tolerance should embrace them.” 

ThinkstockPhotos-478624257In a Washington Post op-ed, The Heritage Foundation’s Ryan T. Anderson and Edwin Meese III, U.S. attorney general from 1985 to 1988, defend the Religious Freedom Restoration Acts that have so viciously come under attack:

Who favors coercion in this debate? Who opposes tolerance and pluralism? The answer to both questions: activists on the left.

The laws under attack — Religious Freedom Restoration Acts — are designed to shield all faiths from government coercion. These acts have, for example, protected a Sikh woman’s freedom to carry religious articles at her workplace. They have allowed a Native American boy to wear his hair long, according to his religious beliefs, at his school.

They also might protect those who hold the belief — attested to from the beginning of the Hebrew Bible to the end of the Christian Bible and throughout the Koran — that marriage is the union of man and woman.

And that’s the belief that the left cannot abide. Well-funded special-interest groups refuse to respect the liberty of people of faith who simply ask to be left alone by government to run their charities, schools and businesses in accordance with their beliefs about marriage.

You can read the full article here.

Answers to Your Honest Questions about Indiana's RFRA Legislation

Have questions about the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act? The Heritage Foundation's Ryan T. Anderson and Sarah Torre have answers.

Won’t the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act allow business owners to refuse service to LGBT people?

Religious Liberty CensoredNo, and no one is interested in refusing to serve gays and lesbians simply because of their sexual orientation. And no one has ever successfully used Religious Freedom Restoration Act to defend such actions. As law professor and religious liberty expert Douglas Laycock—a same-sex marriage supporter—notes:

I know of no American religious group that teaches discrimination against gays as such, and few judges would be persuaded of the sincerity of such a claim. The religious liberty issue with respect to gays and lesbians is about directly facilitating the marriage, as with wedding services and marital counseling.

Religious liberty concerns typically stem from those involved in the wedding industry being penalized by the government because they declined to participate in a same-sex wedding ceremony.

There are now numerous cases of photographers, florists, cake makers and farmers being forced to participate in celebrating same-sex weddings in violation of their belief that marriage is the union of a man and a woman. These are citizens who have no problem serving gays and lesbians but do object to celebrating same-sex weddings.

Religious liberty isn’t an absolute right. Religious liberty doesn’t always trump other values or rights. Religious liberty is balanced with concerns for a compelling state interest that’s being pursued in the least-restrictive means possible. The Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act, like all similar laws, doesn’t determine the outcome of a particular case. It simply provides a way for citizens to go into court to have their individual case reviewed by a court.

Visit the Daily Signal for more.

Must Watch: Brian Brown's Lively Debate on Indiana Religious Liberty Restoration Act

News Channel 8 featured NOM's own Brian Brown today, debating Rev. Graylan Hagler of Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ, on the hot topic of Indiana’s religious freedom bill. You won't want to miss this one:

National Organization for Marriage Defends Indiana Legislature and Governor Mike Pence Against 'Hysteria on Hoosierland' Over Religious Liberty Legislation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 31, 2015
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"Contrary to the claims of opponents of this legislation, it is people of faith who are being discriminated against by powerful groups intent on forcing them to support controversial issues such as same-sex 'marriage,' or risk losing their livelihood and personal assets." — Brian Brown, NOM president —

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Washington, D.C. — Dubbing the reaction to passage of Senate Bill 101, the Religious Liberty Restoration Act, "hysteria on Hoosierland," the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) today defended the Indiana Legislature and Governor Mike Pence for supporting the effort to provide needed legal protections against governmental action aimed at people of faith who exercise their religious beliefs about marriage and other important social issues.

"It's outrageous how the gay rights lobby and their allies in Hollywood and the media are drumming up hysteria on Hoosierland, by grossly misrepresenting the Religious Liberty Restoration Act, falsely describing it as a 'license to discriminate'," said Brian Brown, NOM's president. "I am certain that noted legal 'experts' like Miley Cyrus have not even read a single word of the legislation, taking their cue from pro-gay marriage groups who trot out tired talking points to claim 'discrimination' when the real victims of discrimination are the individuals and small businesses who have been punished for living their faith in the workplace and compelled against their will to participate in same-sex weddings. This legislation does not exempt any person from any claim of discrimination, all it does is give someone a defense they can raise in court if they are the target of governmental action seeking to compel them to participate in something that violates their sincerely held religious beliefs."

Senate Bill 101 does not apply to actions by individuals nor does it exempt anyone from claims of discrimination. The legislation applies to actions by governmental entities. The legislation simply allows someone whom the government seeks to compel to participate in an action that violates their deeply-held religious views the ability to raise a religious liberty defense for consideration in court. Such a defense, however, may be countered by a showing of the government that the compulsory action fulfills a compelling government interest and is the least restrictive means of achieving that result. This type of law has existed at the federal level for over twenty years, and is the law in many other states. There is no evidence that such a law has ever resulted in discrimination against same-sex couples.

"Contrary to the claims of opponents of this legislation, it is people of faith who are being discriminated against by powerful groups intent on forcing them to support controversial issues such as same-sex 'marriage,' or risk losing their livelihood and personal assets," said Brian Brown, NOM's president. "Across the country whenever same-sex 'marriage' is imposed by courts, lawsuits and punishment soon follow for people of faith who cannot compromise their beliefs about the truth of marriage and do not wish to participate in a same-sex ceremony. Now state officials including Attorneys General are using the power of the state to shut down businesses and threaten their owners that they will take all their personal assets as punishment for refusing to go along with same-sex marriage. SB 101 in Indiana will at least give Hoosiers the opportunity to raise a defense in court to combat this kind of harassment and discrimination by governmental entities. We commend Governor Mike Pence and the lawmakers of Indiana who have acted to move this common-sense legislation," Brown said.

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray, [email protected], or Matille Thebolt, [email protected], at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

Why the Indiana Law that Protects Religious Liberty is Good Policy

ThinkstockPhotos-99338324In an article from The Daily Signal, The Heritage Foundation’s Ryan Anderson and Sarah Torre explain why Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act is not controversial, does not promote nor permit discrimination, and above all, why it is good policy to protect citizens from unnecessary and unreasonable government coercion:

These protections for religious freedom, like the one passed in Indiana, provide a commonsense way to balance the fundamental right to religious liberty with compelling government interests.

There are now numerous cases of photographers, florists, cake makers and farmers being forced to participate in celebrating same-sex weddings in violation of their belief that marriage is the union of a man and a woman. These are citizens who have no problem serving gays and lesbians but do object to celebrating same-sex weddings.

Religious liberty isn’t an absolute right. Religious liberty doesn’t always trump. Religious liberty is balanced with concerns for a compelling state interest that’s being pursued in the least-restrictive means possible.

But it isn’t clear that forcing every photographer and every baker and every florist to help celebrate same-sex weddings is advancing a compelling state interest in the least-restrictive way possible. Protecting religious liberty and the rights of conscience doesn’t infringe on anyone’s sexual freedoms.

...Again, Religious Freedom Restoration Acts don’t allow individuals to do whatever they wish in the name of religion. There will be times when the government can show it has a compelling reason for burdening religious expression—to ensure public safety, for instance.

But Religious Freedom Restoration Acts set a high bar for the government to meet in order to restrict religious freedom.

You can read the full article at The Daily Signal.

Why Apple's CEO is Wrong About Indiana's Religious Freedom Law

In a Washington Post op-ed, Apple CEO Tim Cook calls ‘religious freedom’ laws “dangerous” and pro-discrimination:

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A wave of legislation, introduced in more than two dozen states, would allow people to discriminate against their neighbors. Some, such as the bill enacted in Indiana last week that drew a national outcry and one passed in Arkansas, say individuals can cite their personal religious beliefs to refuse service to a customer or resist a state nondiscrimination law.

...Men and women have fought and died fighting to protect our country’s founding principles of freedom and equality. We owe it to them, to each other and to our future to continue to fight with our words and our actions to make sure we protect those ideals. The days of segregation and discrimination marked by “Whites Only” signs on shop doors, water fountains and restrooms must remain deep in our past. We must never return to any semblance of that time. America must be a land of opportunity for everyone.

Tim Cook is wrong on many accounts (our Founding Fathers built America on the idea of equal opportunity, NOT equal outcome), but more importantly, Tim Cook is a hypocrite.

In a commentary piece on The Daily Signal, Ryan Anderson succinctly explains why Tim Cook is the only person in favor of discrimination in this whole debate:

ThinkstockPhotos-124679702It is Tim Cook who favors laws that discriminate against people of faith who simply ask to be left alone by government to run their businesses and their schools and their charities in accordance with their reasonable belief that marriage is the union of a man and a woman. It is Tim Cook who would have the government discriminate against these citizens, have the government coerce them into helping to celebrate a same-sex wedding and penalize them if they try to lead their lives in accordance with their faith.

...Indeed, Apple itself has exercised this freedom (or is the proper word, according to Cook, “discrimination”?). After all, Apple removed the Manhattan Declaration app from its App Store. Apple decided that a Christian app bearing witness to the dignity of unborn life, the nature of marriage as the union of husband and wife and the centrality of religious liberty was incompatible with its mission. So they “discriminated” against the Manhattan Declaration.

No one suggested that this should be made illegal. Even if we thought it a misguided decision, we thought Apple should be free to decide its own values and live according to them.

Tim Cook called on the nation to stand up to discrimination, and that is exactly what Ryan Anderson, Sarah Torre, Mike Pence, and many others have done: they have shown that it is not the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act that is pro-discrimination, but opponents like Tim Cook who are actually advocates of discrimination.

The full article by Ryan Anderson can be read here.

The Alabama Supreme Court Battle

The US Supreme Court has set a precedent upholding the right of states to define marriage as the union of husband and wife. All federal and state judges—including those in Alabama—are bound by that precedent.

148044182In a recent post for the Public Discourse, NOM Chairman Dr. John Eastman outlines the underlying questions and facts that current developments in Alabama are bringing to the surface. When Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore ordered probate judges to withhold issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, news stories abounded with accusations of discrimination on the part of Chief Justice Roy. After all, a federal district judge had already declared that the law defining marriage as between a man and woman is unconstitutional: surely Moore’s stance would be swiftly dismissed.

rmooreHowever, while same-sex marriage proponents cried “injustice” the entire Alabama Supreme Court ratified Chief Justice Moore’s stance with a 7-1 ruling. As same-sex marriage proponents continue to accuse Alabama of unconstitutional actions, Dr. Eastman reminds us that we have not one, but two judicial systems in America, and explains why a single order by a federal judge does not decide what the Constitution “really” says.

Federal courts exist side by side with state courts, and both have a duty to follow the US Constitution. Indeed, as Article VI of the Constitution makes clear, “All . . . judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution.” Decisions of the lower federal courts—what the Constitution calls “inferior courts”—are not binding on the state courts. If the lower federal courts in a state interpret the Constitution in a way that conflicts with the interpretation adopted by the state courts, neither decision has binding effect on the other.

While a federal district court order declaring a state law unconstitutional and enjoining its enforcement can have statewide effect if there is a statewide official involved in the case before the court, that order can only bind the defendants named in the suit, their officers and agents, and “other persons who are in active concert or participation with” them, as specified in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. The order cannot bind people not before the court or acting in concert with them.

Under Alabama law, probate judges—who are responsible for issuing marriage licenses in Alabama—are judicial, not executive officers, and are entirely independent of the executive branch of government. Therefore, the order issued to the Attorney General of Alabama did not and could not bind probate judges.

479208815Dr. Eastman also explains that it was not Chief Justice Moore who failed in his duty, but Judge Callie S. Grande, the federal district judge who struck down the Alabama law defining marriage as between one man and one woman:

...the ethical considerations that led some to chastise Chief Justice Moore were misdirected. It is federal district judge Callie Granade who acted lawlessly by failing to follow existing Supreme Court precedent that remains binding on her. Indeed, were Chief Justice Moore to follow Granade’s order, he would be violating his duty to comply with the binding authority of the Supreme Court, in deference to a lawless order by a single federal trial court judge. In a well-reasoned and lengthy opinion adopted by a 7-1 vote, the Alabama Supreme Court has concluded just that.

You can read Dr. Eastman’s powerful article here, which not only explains what is happening in Alabama, but why states have every right to define marriage as the union of one man one woman.

National Organization for Marriage Commends Alabama Supreme Court For 7 - 1 Ruling Upholding Traditional Marriage

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 4, 2015
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Matille Thebolt (703-683-5004)


"The Alabama Supreme Court is exactly correct that no federal judge has the power to order a state to issue illegal marriage licenses. Other states should follow suit." — Brian Brown, NOM president —

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Washington, D.C. — The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) today commended the Alabama Supreme Court for ordering state officials to cease issuing marriage licenses that are illegal under state law, and thus defied a federal judge who is attempting to impermissibly impose her views of marriage on the people of Alabama.

"We praise the justices of the Alabama Supreme Court who have ruled in overwhelming fashion that the laws of Alabama defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman must be followed by state officials," said Brian Brown, NOM's president. "A single federal judge does not have the authority to force a state to redefine marriage and it's high time that out of control judges were put in their place. We call on other states to similarly order their state's officials to enforce state marriage laws."

Brown noted that the US Supreme Court has never ruled against traditional marriage laws and that binding Supreme Court precedence exists (Baker v Nelson) specifically upholding state laws defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

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To schedule an interview with Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray, [email protected], or Matille Thebolt, [email protected], at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New § 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

The People of Nebraska Deserve Their Day in Court

Americans may disagree on a whole host of issues, including and especially when it comes to the marriage debate, but commitment to the democratic process is critical. What's happening in Nebraska is detrimental to Americans, and to our nation, long-term.

Nebraska's StatePaper.com explains:

GettyImages_137442741[Federal judge Joseph Bataillon] is being asked by seven same-sex couples to issue a preliminary injunction, declaring that they all have a right to be married in the State of Nebraska. They have asked further that the court should order the State of Nebraska and its various agencies, including county clerks, to immediately issue marriage licenses to these couples and to alter the law in Nebraska to allow all same sex couples to be married immediately, even before Nebraska gets its day in court and this matter is tried in the traditional way.

Getting your day in court is important. There are many procedures, such as requiring witnesses to testify under oath, using the power of a subpoena to require people to give you honest evidence and make statements under oath before a trial, and making sure the matter before the court fully heard with live persons and not just lawyer-crafted written statements, affidavits and declarations.

So, now Judge Bataillon is considering the matter and has told everyone he will issue his ruling soon. No trial, no get your “day in court” with all the protections of a fair and equal process leading up to trial. Just consider and decide the issue before a trial.

How can that even happen? How can a judge rule before a full and fair trial?

Read the full editorial at StatePaper.com.

Conservative Panel Appointed to Hear Gay Marriage Cases in 5th Circuit

The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals today announced on their website the justices selected to hear the appeals of lower court rulings on gay marriage cases from Texas, Mississippi and Louisiana. The panel consists of Judges Patrick Higginbotham of Dallas, Jerry Smith of Houston and James Graves Jr. of Jackson, Miss. Higginbotham and Smith are conservative judges appointed to the bench by President Reagan, while Graves is an Obama appointee. Marriage supporters tell NOM they are encouraged by the panel.

GavelThe panel will hear an appeal next week from state officials in Texas and Mississippi where lower federal court judges overturned state marriage amendments defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman. The same panel will hear an appeal from gay couples in Louisiana who were rebuffed by a federal judge in their attempt to redefine marriage in that state.

The 5th Circuit is one of the most conservative in the country. If they vote to uphold traditional marriage laws, as many observers expect, they will join the 6th Circuit which issued a similar ruling this past October. The US Supreme Court is now considering taking the 6th Circuit case, something that NOM has called upon them to do. The first opportunity for the SCOTUS justices to take the case will be in their conference scheduled for January 9th.