Pam Bondi on Keeping Gay Marriage Illegal: "I am Just Getting Started"
Apparently there are some people out there who don't think Attorney General Pam Bondi is doing a good enough job defending Florida's ban on same-sex marriage, which a federal jude just ruled yesterday was unconstitutional and will be scene in the near future as "an obvious pretext for discrimination."
Well, just hours after the ruling, Bondi took a pledge before gay marriage opponents and promised that she's just getting started in her fight to upkeep the ban.
"This is me doing my job as attorney general," Bondi told a group of member of the Palm Beach County Republican Party yesterday night according to the Sun-Sentinel. "And I will continue to do that and if anybody wants me to moderate my message or stand for less I have a message for them: I am just getting started."
Bondi's office has filed appeals to decisions made by four state judges declaring Florida's ban on all legal recognition of same-sex unions unconstitutional in four separate counties.
She's also trying to get all appeals cases delayed until the U.S. Supreme Court rules on the issue.
Bondi's message however is that she's just doing her job, and she believes its her duty to uphold an amendment added to the Florida constitution by 62 percent of voters back in 2008.
"We have a separation of powers in our state. I am not the judiciary," she said. "I am not the person to make that decision. The courts are. I am a member of the executive branch. I'm not a lawmaker. I'm not a member of the legislative branch. This needs to be decided by the United States Supreme Court."
Bondi also added that there are "good people," on both sides of the issues and that she doesn't think her actions should be equated with criticizing gay people personally.
Of course, times have changed since Florida voted to ban gay marriage back in 2008. According to the latest polling from Quinnipiac, 56 percent of Florida's registered voters now support gay marriage with only 39 percent opposing it. That includes 71 percent of voters between 18 and 29, and that poll was taken back in April.
That's the problem with trying to enact laws that restrict people's rights while the public's attitude on the issue is quickly shifting.
Bondi is up for election in November. Two Democrats, George Sheldon and Perry Thurston, will face off in a primary on Tuesday to decide who will be her opponent.
Sheldon and Thurston have both said they would let the judges' rulings stand.
Attorney generals in nine other states have also chosen to stop defending their states' bans.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Miami New Times' biggest stories.
- Frost Family Bails Out Cash-Strapped Science Museum, Cans Entire Board of Directors
Sat., Feb. 13, 6:00pm
Sat., Feb. 13, 7:00pm
Mon., Feb. 15, 7:30pm
Thu., Feb. 18, 7:30pm
- University of Miami Students Now Have $9,000 Napping Pods to Use on Campus
- Florida LGBT Rights Bill Dead; Still Legal to Fire Someone for Being Gay