Equality watch: Arkansas birth certificate case still hanging | Arkansas Blog

Friday, June 23, 2017

Equality watch: Arkansas birth certificate case still hanging

Posted By on Fri, Jun 23, 2017 at 10:45 AM

NAMESAKE: Marissa Pavan is one of the parents named in a case seeking equality in the issuance of Arkansas birth certificates. - BRIAN CHILSON
  • Brian Chilson
  • NAMESAKE: Marissa Pavan is one of the parents named in a case seeking equality in the issuance of Arkansas birth certificates.
The U.S. Supreme Court issued opinions today, but still no word on whether it will accept for review Pavan v. Nathaniel Smith, the challenge to the Arkansas Supreme Court ruling that allows the state to discriminate against same-sex married couples in issuance of marriage licenses.

Opposite-sex married couples are automatically presumed parents when birth certificates are issued. Only the biological parent may be listed without further court orders on birth certificates of same-sex married couples. The controlling opinion by Justice Jo Hart offered the laughable justification that the decision was rooted in biology, despite the fact that many opposite sex couples have children who are not the biological offspring of both parents.

I asked the lead counsel for the Arkansas plaintiffs about the continuing delay.  The case has been distributed for Supreme Court conference six times, most recently Thursday. The Supreme Court has requested the full record of the case. But yet it holds over, while dozens of other review petitions have been denied. The Court finishes its work this term on Monday.

This is the response I got from Douglas H. Hallward-Driemeier of Washington:

We are not at all surprised that the Supreme Court is looking at our petition for certiorari in this case very carefully. The Court requested the record from the Arkansas courts and has undoubtedly been reviewing that along with the parties’ submissions. We are hopeful that the Court will announce on Monday either that it is taking review of the case for next Term or possibly summarily reversing the ruling of the Arkansas Supreme Court as clearly inconsistent with what the U.S. Supreme Court already decided in Obergefell, which required all states to extend the rights and benefits of marriage equally to same-sex and opposite-sex couples. One of the Tennessee couples we represented in Obergefell presented precisely the same circumstances as the plaintiffs in Pavan, and the U.S. Supreme Court upheld their claim.
In this dreary world, a summary reversal of legalized discrimination by the Arkansas Supreme Court would be good news indeed.

PS: The lead plaintiffs in this case, Terrah and Marissa Pavan, DID get a proper birth certificate for their child thanks to a circuit court order, but Attorney General Leslie Rutledge appealed and shut it down for other couples soon after.

Here's the petition for review.

Tags: , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments

Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

Most Shared

  • ASU to reap $3.69 million from estate of Jim and Wanda Lee Vaughn

    Arkansas State University announced today plans for spending an expected $3.69 million gift in the final distribution of the estate of Jim and Wanda Lee Vaughn, who died in 2013 and 2015 respectively.
  • Bad health care bill, again

    Wait! Postpone tax reform and everything else for a while longer because the Senate is going to try to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act one more time before September ends and while it can do it with the votes of only 50 senators.
  • Sex on campus

    Look, the Great Campus Rape Crisis was mainly hype all along. What Vice President Joe Biden described as an epidemic of sexual violence sweeping American college campuses in 2011 was vastly overstated.
  • The inadequate legacy of Brown

    LRSD continues to abdicate its responsibility to educate poor black students.

Most Viewed

  • A Highway 10 traffic solution recommendation

    The Arkansas Department of Transportation has announced its preferences for interchange and other improvements along the Highway 10 corridor between Pleasant Valley Drive and Pleasant Ridge Road.
  • City identifies recipients of cop incentive payments who left force

    Blogger Russ Racop shares the fruits of his Freedom of Information Act request to determine who received $5,000 recruiting incentives to join the Little Rock Police Department and then left the force.
  • ACLU: School crisis 60th no time for celebration. Plus, a message for the governor

    Rita Sklar, executive director of the Arkansas affiliate of the American Civil LIberties Union, has issued a statement taking issue with those who view the 60th anniversary of Central High's limited desegregation thanks to federal court and troops as a "celebration." Plus, my own suggestion for Monday speech-makers.
  • Legislators must give testimony in Fayetteville rights case UPDATE

    Interim word from the hearing in Circuit Court in Fayetteville in which the ACLU and others are challenging the constitutionality of the state law that prevents cities from adopting civil rights ordinances to protect gay people.
  • Radical government: The Obamacare repeal

    Apart from the damage that pending Republican legislation will do to millions of American in terms of lost health insurance, it represents conservatives' long-sought upending of the Medicaid safety net for 74 million poor, disabled and elderly (Medicaid pays for most nursing home costs).

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation