Philly State Reps to Introduce PA Marriage Equality Act

steve mccarter brian sims gay marriage

Representatives Brian Sims and Steve McCarter are making good on their promise to introduce a bill in the state House of Representatives that could make marriage equality the law of this here land, and they’re using Philly’s Love Park as the jumping-off point. Fitting, huh?


HB 1686 (aka the Pennsylvania Marriage Equality Act) will be announced at a public conference tomorrow morning (Oct. 3) at 10 a.m. in Love Park's John F. Kennedy Plaza (16th Street and JFK Boulevard).

This bill will be a major player alongside several lawsuits that are currently challenging Pennsylvania's ban on same-sex marriage, including the announcement this week that Montgomery County Register of Wills D. Bruce Hanes will appeal a recent court order  to stop his issuance of marriage certificates to gay couples. Another one to look out for is Palladino v. Corbett. Philly Mag's Joel Mathis explains why:

Palladino v. Corbett ... challenges the state’s refusal to recognize a gay marriage that was performed in Massachusetts. If the plaintiffs win in federal court, Culhane writes, a bunch of dominoes will fall: “If Palladino and Barker win, and Pennsylvania has to recognize their marriage, the state still won’t have to authorize its own same-sex weddings. But that will soon become a distinction without a difference. Pennsylvania couples can plan their destination weddings in all of New England, New York, Delaware, Maryland, and D.C.—and head home knowing that their marriages are also legal and binding in the state of Pennsylvania. And once this strategy catches on around the country, we’ll have gay couples living with the same rights and protections as straight couples everywhere—even if some states continue to pretend otherwise.”

Stay tuned to G Philly for coverage of tomorrow's event, plus any updates surrounding the other cases.

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  • Lisa Peacewind Corker

    About time!

  • Joe In Philly

    Education funding? Mass transit and highway/bridge repair funding? Who cares? Let’s introduce a marriage equality bill that’s DOA. Brian Sims isn’t getting any more accomplished than his predecesor. But hey, he’s gay and hot so he’ll keep getting reelected.

    • to_tell_the_truth

      Allowing same-gender couples to marry actually COSTS nothing. No monies will be taken away from “Mass transit and highway/bridge repair funding” in order to render equal protections of the laws to ALL citizens.

  • Jd82990

    Gotta love Brian Sims. Good man.

  • to_tell_the_truth

    Re: “The suit is Palladino v. Corbett, and it challenges the state’s refusal to recognize a gay marriage that was performed in Massachusetts. If the plaintiffs win in federal court, Culhane writes, a bunch of dominoes will fall: “If Palladino and Barker win, and Pennsylvania has to recognize their marriage, the state still won’t have to authorize its own same-sex weddings. But that will soon become a distinction without a difference. Pennsylvania couples can plan their destination weddings in all of New England, New York, Delaware, Maryland, and D.C.—and head home knowing that their marriages are also legal and binding in the state of Pennsylvania. And once this strategy catches on around the country, we’ll have gay couples living with the same rights and protections as straight couples everywhere—even if some states continue to pretend otherwise.”

    This would be an excellent case to take to the SC(R)OTUS, and force them to focus on the Full Faith & Credit Clause of the US Constitution (a part that was not addressed in the June/13 cases).

    And, the (mis-named) “Defense” of Marriage Act actually EXEMPTS ITSELF from the FF&CC. How any law that exempts itself from parts of the Constitution can be considered ‘Constitutional’ is a mystery.

  • to_tell_the_truth

    Re: “So who can win the race to bring gay marriage to Pennsylvania? Judges or legislators?”

    At least it is coming – one way or another. Because one by one, justice gets done.