On June 26, 2015, the United States Supreme Court ruled in favor of the freedom to marry in the case Obergefell v. Hodges, ending marriage discrimination throughout the nation. This decision was quickly implemented by states across the country, including in Texas. Read more about the ruling here.
In 2005, anti-gay forces in Texas pushed through Proposition 2, a constitutional amendment that excludes same-sex couples from marriage and prohibits same-sex couples from attaining any other form of legal family status.
On February 26, a federal judge ruled in favor of the freedom to marry in Texas, striking down the state's anti-marriage constitutional amendment. The decision was in DeLeon v. Perry, in which two same-sex couples sought the freedom to marry and respect for their out-of-state marriages in Texas. The decision was quickly appealed by Gov. Rick Perry and Attorney General Abbott to the U.S. Court of Appeals to the 5th Circuit. An oral argument is scheduled in the case before the 5th Circuit for January 9, 2015. Although plaintiffs asked for the stay to be lifted in the ruling so that same-sex couples can marry while the appeal is considered, Judge Garcia denied the request, leaving the matter to the 5th Circuit.
On June 26, Texas Judge Garcia lifted the stay in DeLeon v. Perry, and same-sex couples began getting marriage licenses that same day.
Read more about marriage litigation in Texas.
GROUPS ACTIVELY WORKING ON MARRIAGE:
- Texas for Marriage is a campaign from Freedom to Marry in partnership with Equality Texas focused on increasing support for the freedom to marry in TX.
- Equality Texas is a statewide political advocacy organization working to advance the cause of equality for all Texans.
- Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage for same-sex couples nationwide.
In the past, support for the freedom to marry in Texas was below 40% but today a plurality of Texans (48%) now support marriage for same sex couples. (Texas Tech University, April 2014)
NUMBER OF SAME-SEX COUPLES:
According to The Williams Institute's analysis of the 2010 U.S. Census, 46,401 same-sex couples are living in Texas, representing 5.2 same-sex couples per 1,000 households.
Blog Posts Related to Texas
As we await the United States Supreme Court's ruling on the question of the freedom to marry, counties are preparing for the possibility that their marriage bans may be struck down as a result of the decision.
Today, February 19, the first same-sex couple in Texas was issued a marriage license in Austin.
Here's what's going on in the 13 states where same-sex couples continue to be denied the freedom to marry. Every day of denial in these states is a day too long - and the past year of momentum demonstrates more clearly than ever: America is ready for the freedom to marry.
Resources Related to Texas
This fall, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit will consider the appeal of a February 2014 ruling in favor of the freedom to marry in Texas. Dozens of "friends of the court" have filed briefs in the case, De Leon v. Perry, urging the 5th Circuit to affirm the ruling and pave the way for the freedom to marry in Texas.
UCLA demographers analyzing 2010 Census Bureau data have found that same-sex couples raising children are more common in the South than in any other region in the United States.
The 2010 Texas Lyceum poll shows that a majority of Texans support some form of legal recognition for gay and lesbian couples.