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Attorney General Greg Abbott Says Texas Domestic Partner Benefits Violate State's Ban on Gay Marriage

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott issued an opinion yesterday stating that domestic partner benefits offered by local governments and school districts are unconstitutional, the AP reports:

AbbottTea party-backed state Sen. Dan Patrick sought the ruling in November. The Houston Republican argued that Texas amended its constitution in 2005 to define marriage as between one man and one woman, while prohibiting government entities from recognizing anything similar to marriage.

The cities of El Paso, Austin and Fort Worth have offered some benefits to domestic partners. Pflugerville, outside Austin, became the state's first school district to extend similar benefits.

The Dallas Voice has more:

Ken Upton, Dallas-based senior staff attorney for the LGBT civil rights group Lambda Legal, said Abbott’s opinion is hardly surprising. Abbott has also used the marriage amendment to try to prevent same-sex couples legally married in other states from obtaining divorces in Texas.

“He didn’t do anything we didn’t expect,” Upton said. “The truth is, it’s just an opinion.”

Upton said if a local government that offers DP benefits decides to rescind them based on the AG’s opinion, employees losing benefits for their partners likely would sue. On the flip side, a disgruntled anti-gay taxpayer could try to sue if money is being used to offer DP benefits.

Read Abbott's opinion, AFTER THE JUMP...


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  1. Fair enough. Then I don't want my gay NY taxes going to help them clean up the shoddy blown up factory they let go.

    Posted by: ChrisQ | Apr 30, 2013 11:04:15 AM

  2. I don't have children. Does this mean I can opt out of paying property taxes to the school district?

    Posted by: Ben Nevis | Apr 30, 2013 11:10:12 AM

  3. While I'm sorry for the people this will affect in the short term, it will also show others how unreasonable and controlling these people really are. The tide is turning and the harder they push, the more extreme they become, the faster they will fall.

    Posted by: Jimcracky | Apr 30, 2013 11:11:22 AM

  4. Greg Abbott and Rick Perry. A real marriage made in heaven, huh?

    Posted by: Ben Nevis | Apr 30, 2013 11:17:42 AM

  5. No denying the benefits to tax payers is what is unconstitutional. Don't want to offer the benefits? Then you have no legal right to tax them. Period.

    Posted by: RMc | Apr 30, 2013 11:17:51 AM

  6. Well he does admit if the Supreme Court rules in favor of the gays that might mean the end of every anti gay constitutional amendment

    Posted by: Anthony | Apr 30, 2013 11:19:12 AM


    Taking my hard earned money than penalizing me for being gay? No! won't sit well.

    Posted by: Jeremy | Apr 30, 2013 11:29:02 AM

  8. You reading this, Kennedy?

    Posted by: My Ex's Buried in Texas | Apr 30, 2013 11:30:22 AM

  9. I would consider it unconstitutional to let the people with the most money be the ones with the only voice in the matter. Who's funding you Greg Abbott? It used to be that rich white men were the only ones entitled to an opinion. My how times have changed. If we would only freeze time as the right wing would have we could all be at the whim of the few. How lovely that would be for only the rich white men. Sorry Greg Darlin', times are changing, even in your own state, without the right wing's permission. Welcome to true constitutionally provided democracy at work.

    Posted by: Hey Darlin' | Apr 30, 2013 2:07:21 PM

  10. This is the face of bigotry. So when a SCOTUS judge asks 'so it's just about a word?' this is the article he needs to read. Then let him give us his answer.

    Gay Texans are in harms way and need our support. Our freedoms are not fully gained until all of us have equality.

    Posted by: JONES | Apr 30, 2013 2:49:19 PM

  11. I thought marriage and domestic partnership were two different things? I don't see a conflict.

    Posted by: ty | Apr 30, 2013 5:26:56 PM

  12. Why do people like this seem to almost get off on being cruel and heartless? What joy does it bring them to know that two loving people can't build a life together, bequeath a home to each other, make medical decisions for each other, adopt children together? What kind of small, cramped, unkind "god" (little g) do you people worship?

    Posted by: Dback | Apr 30, 2013 9:54:38 PM

  13. SCOTUS--are you listening?

    Posted by: Clayton | May 1, 2013 6:20:58 PM

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