Rick Scott on DOMA Repeal: Nothing Changing in Florida
Rick Scott didn't have much to say today when asked about the Supreme Court's decision to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act aside from correctly noting that nothing is really going to change all that much in Florida.
"It impacted federal law, not state law," Scott said according to Naked Politics. "In 2008, Florida voters amended our constitution and said that we are a traditional marriage state, that marriage is between a man and a woman. As the governor of this state, I'll uphold the law of the land, and that's the law of our state."
Scott added, "Look, I've been married since I was 19. I believe in traditional marriage."
Which doesn't really make sense, considering being married for decades to someone of the opposite sex shouldn't and doesn't at all mean you should be opposed to same-sex marriage, but OK. Scott really can't be counted on to say things that make sense.
But he is right. Not that much is going to change in Florida. Gay couples who travel out of state to marry, or move to Florida after marrying in a state that recognized gay marriage will not lose all federal benefits, but will lose many important ones as we pointed out earlier.
Of course, there is a movement to put gay marriage back on the ballot in 2014 lead by local activist Vanessa Britto. Her group, Equal Marriage Florida, has until February 1st to gather up 681,00 signatures, but is aiming for a million to guard against the possibility some of those signatures could be thrown out. Britto has also set a deadline to collect at least a tenth of those signatures by August 1st.
The bill would not only nullify 2008's Amendment 2, which outlawed both gay marriage and civil unions in Florida, but legalize gay marriage in Florida. In order to pass, 60 percent of Florida voters must approve the measure.
It's an uphill battle, but not impossible. A poll from May shows that 75 percent of Floridians support some legal recognition for gay couples, but about half of those only support civil unions.
Though, as Think Progress points out, the age of civil unions is just about dead thanks to the repeal of DOMA. There now is a big difference between civil unions and marriage in more than just name.
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.