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Jo Clifton is the Politics Editor for the Austin Monitor.
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No gay marriages happening here (yet)
Thursday, February 19, 2015 by Jo Clifton
Update: This morning, Sarah Goodfriend and Suzanne Bryant were legally married in Austin, after a Travis County judge ordered the county clerk to issue a marriage license…Even though Travis County Clerk Dana de Beauvoir was not on the verge of issuing marriage licenses to those seeking to marry their gay partners based on a local judge’s decision, Texas Atty. Gen. Ken Paxton decided Wednesday that the state should intervene in a Travis County case involving that issue. On Tuesday, Travis County Probate Judge Guy Herman ruled that Texas’ prohibition on gay marriage is unconstitutional. He did so in a probate matter and his ruling would not have applied outside of Travis County. Equality Texas called on De Beauvoir to begin issuing such licenses Wednesday. However, acting on advice from the Travis County Attorney’s Office, De Beauvoir declined to issue those licenses. In 2014, U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia of San Antonio also found Texas’ ban violated the Constitution. However, he issued a stay of his own order so that the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, and eventually the U.S. Supreme Court could rule on the matter. Arguments are scheduled for April on several states’ gay marriage bans with a decision likely this summer. Paxton’s decision to seek a stay by the Texas Supreme Court of an order that is not being followed should be seen as political theater.