Friday, February 08, 2008

Does Van Hollen know the definition of marriage?

Now I'm really sorry I can't go to the Americans for Prosperity Summit tomorrow. Perhaps someone else in attendance can ask him what is the definition of marriage?

There is a case before the state supreme court regarding the definition of marriage and whether same sex couples should be given benefits as if they were a married couple. This case does not affect those communities and insititutions that are already giving benefits to same sex couples, but instead affects those communities, businesses and government institutions that do not.

Michael Dean of the First Freedoms Foundation (FFF) represents "eight Wisconsin municipalities and school boards who were not parties but are trying to intervene to defend and introduce evidence supporting the legislative definition of marriage." The state supreme court ruled against them today, moving what should have been interested parties in the lawsuit to spectators on the sidelines.

Interestingly, Dean points out in the FFF press release:

The court acknowledged that the attorney general isn’t putting any evidence in the record to support the legislature’s decision to define “dependents” to include “spouses” but not same-sex partners. The court says that when the case comes back a second time for a decision on the merits of the plaintiffs’ claim, it can order the case returned to the trial court yet a third time so the attorney general can do his job and actually put evidence in the record. The court doesn’t promise it will do that, nor does it explain why the attorney general should be permitted to put in evidence after he’s refused to do so twice already.