5 people not into the Montgomery County same-sex marriage certificates

GaymarriageAs we’ve been following here, Montgomery County Register of Willis D. Bruce Hanes began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples last month and, to date, has made it officially unofficial for at least 137 sets of lovers across the Keystone State. It’s been met with a large amount of fanfare and national attention, but as expected, not everyone’s too happy about it. Below, find five people or organizations who’ve stumbled out of the gate to criticize Hanes on his actions, with limited success.

The American Family Association of PA

Headed by Diane Gramley, the American Family Association fights for the same issues as its national director of issues, Brian Fischer: the LGBT community, pornography and abortion. They’re against all of it. The first week Hanes announced he’d be issuing licenses, the AFA of PA sent out one of their weekly emails which are always really well put together (not kidding). In part of their first email, they noted:

Yesterday, when the news was first announced that he was willing to issue these fraudulent marriage licenses, the AFA of PA contacted his office.   We specifically asked him if he would also issue a marriage license to first cousins who were in love — which, by the way, is also illegal in PA.  No response from Mr. Hanes’ office as of this writing.


Action of PA

Confession: I hadn’t heard of Action of PA before one of their emails showed up in my Philadelphia Weekly mail on August 16th. As it happens, the ACTION acronym is pretty awesome. It stands for Americans for Christian Traditions in our Nation. Right?

Anyway, they called for Hanes’ impeachment, naturally.

Gwenne Alexander, president of ACTION of PA, said that usually when ordinary people break the law, they are arrested. When a state official breaks the law, they are removed from office and that’s exactly what ACTION of PA is setting out to do. While those who support homosexual marriage are rallying and celebrating to thank D. Bruce Hanes, ACTION of PA is calling for his resignation or an impeachment from his post as the Register of Wills of Montgomery County, Pa.

Stu Bykofsky

First, the Philadelphia Daily News columnist told Attorney General Kathleen Kane to “resign” her position as the commonwealth’s top lawyer after she recused herself from the Defense of Marriage Act case earlier this summer. Then, he agreed with Republican Bruce Castor’s assessment that if Hanes were really serious about same-sex weddings, he’d have refused to issue a marriage license to an LGBT couple, then encourage them to sue him over marriage equality. He used an equivalency to judge Hanes’ actions.

As I said elsewhere, what if the governor decided he didn’t like child labor laws because they hurt business and deny employment to youth. How would you feel if he chose to not enforce that law? Not good, right?

Mike McMonagle

Mike McMonagle is the president of the Pro-Life Coalition of Pennsylvania, another group I wasn’t much aware of until they showed up at World Net Daily, the wingnuttiest of all right wing news websites, which is never too far away in my own browser history.

But here’s the thing: What does a Pro-Life organization have to do with fighting against marriage equality? Simple: “[Same-sex marriage] is just a continuation of the war on children, begun with contraception and sterilization and continuing with abortion. Now it’s an effort to deny children a mother and a father,” the coalition’s president told WND radio.

That sounds like a bit of a stretch, but you know what? Sure. Whatever dude.

Tom Corbett/Daryl Metcalfe/other conservatives

Over the past year, everything has gone wrong for Pennsylvania chief executive. His poll numbers have plummeted, he’s been outed as an incompetent leader of his own party, and he’s had to deal with legal battles surrounding LGBT issues in the state, which he must’ve assumed from the get-go wouldn’t have been the case here, at least over his first three years.

Now, the governor has to spend whatever capital he’s still got in the Capitol fighting both Hanes and the American Civil Liberties Union, who have filed a suit against the state’s Defense of Marriage Act—which is what led to this whole situation in the first place. Luckily, it’s his Health Department doing the heavy lifting on this one.

Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler) basically called for everyone to resign and be impeached, because if he hadn’t state politicos would have thought he’d gone missing. He said in a statement:

Anything that that courthouse issues to anyone other than a man and a woman would not be valid in Pennsylvania. The individual doing so is committing an act of lawlessness. It’s outrageous to see a locally elected official believing he has the ability to set state policy like this from a local county office. If it wasn’t so wrong it would be laughable.

You have an individual who is charged with carrying out the law of Pennsylvania and this individual breaks the law. … Ultimately, I think there might be an impeachment procedure. The Legislature could remove this individual from office for violating the law.

As we noted yesterday, the arguments in the case begin September 4th. And while no one’s necessarily arguing that these marriage certificates have any legal meaning, it should be interesting to see the sort of attention and details to respectively go in and come out of the case. Because Pennsylvania’s conservatives, as evidenced above, have been completely caught of guard here. It’s sort of incredible.

Follow Randy on Twitter: @RandyLoBasso

One Response to “ 5 people not into the Montgomery County same-sex marriage certificates ”

  1. Frank Rizzo says:

    Since when is the Montgomery County Register of Wills an expert on Constitutional law, i.e. so much so that he is above the law? How about following the law instead of discrediting himself and his movement by breaking the law.

Leave a Reply

Follow PW

Got a news tip?

If you see something interesting, odd, funny or, of course, illegal, let us know by emailing tips@philadelphiaweekly.com