A judge in Texas ruled that the ban on gay marriage in the Lone Star State violates the US Constitution. The decision will be appealed and heard by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans which hears cases that come out of Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi. Legal analyst Tim Meche thinks the Texas ruling could affect gay marriage laws here.
"Virtually every court has ruled that it's unconstitutional to deny same sex couples the right to marry," Meche said. "It seems likely the 5th Circuit would go along with those courts."
Meche says it seems likely the 5th Circuit will rule the same way other federal courts have in recent weeks in Utah, Oklahoma, Kentucky and Virginia -- that you can't restrict same sex couples from getting married.
He says opponents haven't made a good case in explaining why gay couples getting married should be against the law.
"Obviously they can't say it's for religious reasons because that would be patently unconstitutional. They've tried to say marriage should be reserved for promoting childbearing," Meche says. "But we don't prevent infertile couples or couples in their 70s and 80s from getting married."
The Texas lawsuit was originally filed by two same sex couples from Austin and Plano. Meche says if the 5th Circuit upholds the lower court's ruling, it's likely you'll see a similar case come up in Louisiana.
"If the 5th Circuit rules that the Texas law prohibiting gay marriage is unconstitutional," Meche says. "Then it would be equally unconstitutional in Louisiana."
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