The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

By Jeff Weiner, Orlando Sentinel

ORLANDO, Florida — The Florida Supreme Court on Friday declined a request for it to take up the issue of same-sex marriage, sending back to a lower court the case of two women who were denied a divorce by a Hillsborough County circuit judge.

The 2nd District Court of Appeal passed up ruling in the case last month, sending it directly to the high court and arguing gay marriage is an issue of “great public importance,” likely to impact more than just the Tampa couple.

Citing its potential to effect “the proper administration of justice,” the appeal court was trying to skip a step and expedite the case’s path to the high court. But the justices deemed that “pass through” maneuver unnecessary.

Mariama Shaw and Keiba Shaw got married in 2010 in Massachusetts, where same-sex marriage is legal. They want a divorce, but a circuit judge in Hillsborough rejected their request, saying their marriage is not valid in Florida.

Same-sex couples have won limited victories in several Florida counties in recent weeks, and activists have been hoping to get a case in front of the state’s Supreme Court, in order to get a decision that would apply statewide.

The Supreme Court specifically cited the dissenting opinion written by Judge Chris Altenbernd of the 2nd District, who disagreed with his Court of Appeal colleagues when they passed the case on to the higher court in August.

He wrote the case’s impact isn’t broad enough, arguing it hinges only on whether Florida must recognize other states’ same-sex marriages for the purposes of divorce — and not whether its same-sex marriage ban is constitutional.

“Although the issue on appeal is important to this couple, I am not convinced that the order on appeal presents an issue that is ripe to be treated as one with great public importance,” Altenbernd wrote in his dissent.

Photo: sigmaration via Flickr

Interested in national news? Sign up for our daily email newsletter!

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons and one novel. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

The late Sen. John McCain

I don't know Kyrsten Sinema, but I did know John McCain. Not at all intimately, to be sure, but just enough to say -- despite her pretensions and the fantasies of her flacks that she is the reincarnation of the war hero in a purple wig -- that Kyrsten Sinema is no John McCain.

Lately Sinema has advertised herself as a "maverick," by which she means that she flouts the positions and policies of her party's leadership, and is supposed to pair her with McCain, who sometimes strayed from the Republican party line. Her most notorious attempt at imitation occurred last year with a gesture on the Senate floor marking her vote against a minimum wage increase. Her coy mimicry of the admired war hero was synthetic, leaving an unpleasant odor in its wake. When McCain delivered his bold "thumbs down" on gutting Obamacare, he was protecting Arizona's working families – not betraying them.

Keep reading... Show less
x
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}