Federal Judge Shoots Down Texas' Gay Marriage Ban as Unconstitutional

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Feb. 26 2014 2:52 PM

Federal Judge Shoots Down Texas' Gay Marriage Ban as Unconstitutional

187298763-supporters-of-same-sex-marriage-celebrate-in-the
Supporters of same-sex marriage celebrate in the Boystown neighborhood after the Illinois General Assembly's passed a gay marriage bill on November 7, 2013 in Chicago

File photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

The latest legal victory for marriage equality in a string of them comes from the Lone Star State, via a San Antonio Express-News news flash:

A federal judge in San Antonio has declared Texas' ban on gay marriage unconstitutional. U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia, however, also issued a stay, meaning the ban stays in effect for the time being.
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"Today’s court decision is not made in defiance of the great people of Texas or the Texas Legislature, but in compliance with the U.S. Constitution and Supreme Court precedent," Garcia wrote in his decision. "Without a rational relation to a legitimate governmental purpose, state-imposed inequality can find no refuge in our U.S. Constitution."

Slate will have more on the ruling in a bit, but for now you can read the decision for yourself below. Elsewhere: David S. Cohen and Dahlia Lithwick discuss marriage equality's perfect record post-Windsor, and why gay marriage can't lose in the courts.

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. 

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