Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Texas A.G.: Domestic Partnerships Violate Texas Constitution

Yesterday saw an important victory for marriage and the rule of law in Texas. Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott released an official attorney general opinion concluding that the Texas Constitution “prohibits political subdivisions from creating a legal status of domestic partnership and recognizing that status by offering public benefits based upon it.”

Currently, several local governments, including Pflugerville ISD have given legal recognition to domestic partnerships and/or same-sex couples, in violation of the Texas Constitution. Austin ISD is attempting to be the second school district in Texas to give legal recognition to domestic partnerships. Late last year, Senator Dan Patrick, Chairman of the Senate Education Committee, submitted a formal AG Opinion request on this issue and Texas Values issued a brief in support, arguing that these local governments were clearly violating the Texas Constitution.

This opinion now makes it clear, Pflugerville ISD and other local governmental entities in Texas are in clear violation of the Texas Constitution. Pflugerville ISD and Austin ISD are teaching their students a terrible lesson about the importance of following the law if these rogue school districts don’t immediately end their unconstitutional policy. This issue highlights the need for accountability and enforcement of the Texas Constitution.

HB 1568, by Rep. Drew Springer, is on the move in the Texas House and provides for specific accountability and enforcement measures against school districts that violate the Texas Constitution. Contact your representative to support HB 1568 and contact the Calendars Committee and encourage them to pass the bill out of committee and onto the House floor for a vote.

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