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Texas High Court Hears Arguments on Same-Sex Divorce

Texas High Court Hears Arguments on Same-Sex Divorce

Observers say it should take several months for the Texas Supreme Court to hand down a decision on same-sex divorce.

If same-sex marriages aren’t legal in this state, should Texas grant divorces to same-sex couples who married in other states?  Oral arguments were made yesterday in Austin. 

There were two cases - gay couples in Austin and Dallas.  Both got married, legally, in Massachusetts and later wanted divorces in Texas.  This state's constitutional ban on gay marriage dates back to 2005. 

Attorney General Greg Abbott argues allowing Texas to grant a divorce requires recognizing the marriage.

“It not only is just condoning it,” Abbott says, “it leads to it.”

The couples argue Texas can't dispute that they got married and the state's ban on gay marriage says nothing about divorce.  Attorneys for the state of Texas answered that the only remedy for them here is to declare their marriages void, as if they never were legal.

“If you can get a divorce,” he says, “it allows for the perpetuation of same-sex marriage in the state of Texas, which of course violates the Texas Constitution.”

 

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