Gov. Tom Corbett will not appeal Tuesday’s same-sex marriage ruling. #breaking
— witfnews (@witfnews) May 21, 2014
A press release from the Governor’s office states:
“I have thoroughly reviewed Judge Jones’ opinion in the Whitewood case,” Corbett said in a statement Wednesday. “Given the high legal threshold set forth by Judge Jones in this case, the case is extremely unlikely to succeed on appeal. Therefore, after review of the opinion and on the advice of my Commonwealth legal team, I have decided not to appeal Judge Jones’ decision.
The Governor is in the process of thoroughly reviewing the decision of the court, we anticipate having a statement available tomorrow. — Governor Tom Corbett (@GovernorCorbett) May 20, 2014
It has been 24 hours since Judge Jones has overturned Pennsylvania’s ban on same-sex marriages and Governor Corbett has yet to make a statement on the issue. Governor Corbett’s twitter account announced that he would release statement as of today, but still nothing.
Here are what state officials and politicians have said on the issue:
House Minority Leader Dan Frenkel:
“I am delighted with yesterday’s decision on marriage equality in Pennsylvania. It will allow loving couples — gay or straight — from across the Commonwealth to share in the joys of a life-long marriage commitment. Attorney General Kathleen Kane has been proven right in her decision not to defend the state’s unconstitutional ban on marriage equality and now I call upon Governor Tom Corbett to not pursue an appeal of this decision.
“Pennsylvanians do not need to see any more time or money wasted on fighting this decision. We need Governor Corbett to focus on the upcoming state budget and the creation of good-paying jobs. We also need the legislature to continue to push for non-discrimination legislation (H.B. 300/S.B. 300) so that newly married couples in Pennsylvanian cannot be fired or denied housing just for marrying the people they love.”
Democratic Lt. Governor Nominee Mike Stack:
“Judge Jones recognized that Pennsylvania is on the wrong side of civil rights history and it’s time for Governor Corbett to do the same.
This is not the first judicial repudiation of the Corbett administration and millions of taxpayer dollars have been wasted by its blind and stubborn view of basic rights. I urge the governor to abandon his fight against marriage equality, reject any advice to appeal, and send a message to the rest of the country that Pennsylvania is a welcoming place to live, love and raise a family.
I offer heartfelt congratulations to the plaintiffs in this case. Unfortunately, it still requires significant courage in Pennsylvania to stand up against discrimination and bigotry. They will be looked upon by future generations as pioneers for civil rights and the true family values of love, commitment and acceptance.”
United States Senator Bob Casey:
“I’m pleased that the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania today struck down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. This was the right decision and is a step forward for equality in our Commonwealth and in the Nation. As a U.S. Senator representing Pennsylvania, I have heard from many LGBT Pennsylvanians and their families who want nothing more than equal rights under the law. As one mother from Pennsylvania said in a letter to me:
‘My kids have two proud and loving parents who are honest [and] work hard. I want my kids to know they are equal and our family is equal . . . I just want my family to be treated equally and with respect by my state and federal government.’
I believe this decision is a critical step toward achieving equal rights for all Pennsylvanians.”
State Senator Daylin Leach:
“I am thrilled to join with equality supporters from across the state in celebrating the federal court’s historic decision. In 2009, I introduced Pennsylvania’s first marriage equality bill and everyone said this was a hopeless cause. I knew it was the moral dilemma of our time and I must fight every day until justice prevailed,” Leach said. “This is a momentous decision, one I implore Governor Corbett to not appeal. Public polling demonstrates that the majority of Americans support marriage equality. I am proud to know that same-sex couples that would like to marry or have married will now be treated equally under the law.”
State Rep. Stephen McCarter:
“This is truly one of those momentous occasions where I fully believe we will remember where we were when the ruling came down,” McCarter said. “A majority of Pennsylvanians support marriage equality, and we’re the only northeast state that does not grant equal rights to our LGBT citizens. This ruling was long past due and I couldn’t be happier that the court system made the right decision.”
The ruling, brought down by Judge John E. Jones III, ruled that Pennsylvania’s Defense of Marriage Act violated the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.
“This has long been a civil rights issue for the LGBT community that unfortunately, Pennsylvania has been behind the times on,” McCarter said. “We strive to attract the best and brightest residents to Pennsylvania to live in our communities and enhance our economy, and by illegally disenfranchising an entire group of people by saying that when you cross into Pennsylvania from New York, Maryland or Delaware you lose certain rights, we irrevocably harm Pennsylvania’s appeal.”
State Treasurer Rob McCord:
“Appealing this decision and continuing to argue for the law in other same-sex marriage cases would amount to support for legalized discrimination, and it would waste more taxpayer money on morally indefensible court battles at a time when the state needs every nickel it can find,” McCord said.
Treasury records indicate the Corbett Administration has spent at least $588,000 of public money so far for outside legal counsel to defend the same-sex marriage law, not counting internal state time and resources expended.
This is only a sample of what has been published by officials and politicans from around the Commonwealth, but as of 2:15, a little more than 24 hours after Judge Jones’ decision, Governor Tom Corbett has not come out in favor of appealing the decision nor has he come out with any statement whatsoever.