As expected the High Court has ruled against Simon Corbell’s gay marriage laws.
Will he have the decency to resign?
More to come.
Shane Rattenbury says it’s up to the Federales now:
ACT Greens Member for Molonglo, Shane Rattenbury has called on the Federal Government to now legislate for an end to marriage discrimination after the High Court has ruled the ACT’s Marriage Equality Bill unlawful.
“Today’s ruling from the High Court was about legal technicalities – it was not about the morality, the common sense or the human importance of ending marriage discrimination,” said Mr Rattenbury.
“Attorney General George Brandis indicated that the Federal Government challenged the ACT’s legislation in the High Court for constitutional reasons rather than moral opposition.
“Now that the High Court has made the constitutional issues clear, the Greens call on the Abbott Government to do what is right both constitutionally and morally, and legislate an end to marriage discrimination, something the majority of Australians want to see.
Fat chance of that from this government but if Labor wants to make too much of it they really should make it party platform.
UPDATE: The High Court’s judgment summary is now available:
Today the High Court decided unanimously that the Marriage Equality (Same Sex) Act 2013, enacted by the Legislative Assembly for the Australian Capital Territory, cannot operate concurrently with the federal Marriage Act 1961. The Court held that the federal Parliament has power under the Australian Constitution to legislate with respect to same sex marriage, and that under the Constitution and federal law as it now stands, whether same sex marriage should be provided for by law is a matter for the federal Parliament.
FURTHER UPDATE: Simon Corbell is applauding his own leadership and hoping for a warm fuzzy out of the Liberals:
The ACT Government has urged the Federal Government to ensure equality for all Australians, after a disappointing outcome in the High Court, which ruled today that the Marriage Equality (Same Sex) Act 2013 is invalid, Attorney-General, Simon Corbell, said.
Mr Corbell said the Prime Minister should now allow a conscience vote on same sex marriage in the Federal Parliament.
“Now is the time for a national debate on this issue as we witnessed the joy of those couples that have been married since Saturday, when the first weddings took place under the ACT Government’s law.
“The High Court has ruled that the Commonwealth Act is a comprehensive and exhaustive statement of the law of marriage, therefore states and territories are unable to legislate for same sex marriage.”
Mr Corbell said the ACT had shown leadership by passing laws for same sex marriage.
Simon unapologetic for the colossal waste of time, effort and people’s lives:
ACT unapologetic for attempt at #marriageequality, it's time for the Fed Parl to bring marriage law in line with 21st Century Australia
— Simon Corbell MLA (@SimonCorbell) December 12, 2013
Andrew Barr talking big:
Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. Today, sadly, the struggle continues…
— Andrew Barr (@ABarrMLA) December 12, 2013
The Greens are pushing again for a conscience vote:
— GreensMPs (@GreensMPs) December 12, 2013
Perhaps the greatest sin of all, Simon has brought joy to the Australian Christian Lobby:
The Australian Christian Lobby has welcomed the High Court’s decision to reject the ACT’s same-sex marriage laws.
Managing Director Lyle Shelton said the ruling upholds uniformity of marriage laws across the country.
“The ACT’s “marriage” laws were inconsistent with the federal laws and incapable of concurrent operation,” he said.
“This ruling shows it is not the jurisdiction of states to legislate in regards to marriage,” Mr Shelton said.
“It’s important for marriage laws to continue to be administered federally – this is why the Marriage Act was passed in 1961 to have uniform marriage laws,” he said.
In the Canberra Times Crispin Hull is trying to paint it as a win for marriage equality as marriage is now defined as possibly applying beyond the hetero norm.
This correspondent is not convinced any Commonwealth marriage equality laws would ever have faced serious threat on that front, but if it brings someone some joy then that’s something out of this mess.
This from one of those who got married:
So. We're legally de-married. Here's an exclusive: we're as married in our hearts as we ever were. #onwards
— Ivan Hinton (@IvanHinton) December 12, 2013
Canberra’s Labor members are calling on Tony Abbott to think again:
We are very disappointed with the decision by the High Court to strike out the territory’s same-sex marriage law.
This is a grim day for those same-sex couples that took advantage of the ACT’s ground-breaking legislation and tied the knot since Saturday.
We commend ACT Labor on its efforts to advance the cause of equality.
We also respect the decision of the High Court.
The Prime Minister must now deliver on his pledge that the Liberal Party room will revisit the question of whether to have a conscience vote on same-sex marriage.
The Abbott Government chose to mount this legal challenge at a cost to taxpayers when this is an inherently political decision that should be decided in the Federal Parliament.
[Photo by Josh]