RALEIGH, N.C. – A bill filed by four Republicans in the North Carolina House would make same-sex marriage illegal, again restoring the state’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriages and civil unions.
House Bill 780, which is sponsored by two Charlotte-area representatives, is titled the “Uphold Historical Marriage Act.” HB780 says that the United States Supreme Court ruling that legalized same-sex marriage is “null and void in the State of North Carolina,” and that “the State of North Carolina shall henceforth uphold and enforce Section 6 of Article XIV of the North Carolina Constitution.
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The proposed bill quotes the Bible, saying “a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24, ESV).
Does this new bill carry any weight? We asked Elon University Political Science professor Dr. Jason Husser.
"If this piece of legislation passed, it would immediately be ruled unconstitutional, it would never actually have the force of law," said Husser. "Many states have unconstitutional laws on their books, they don't really bother to remove them a lot of times because once they're unconstitutional, Attorneys General don't enforce them, neither do prosecutors."
So if a passed law wouldn't do anything, why even introduce it?
"It may have some political purpose for the people who proposed this bill," said Husser. "They're able to engage their point and say, at least to them, this issue in the culture war still rages."
The bill is sponsored by Larry Pittman of Cabarrus County, Rowan County Rep. Carl Ford, Mike Clampitt of Bryson City, and Michael Speciale of New Bern.
In 2012, North Carolina voters approved Amendment One, which prohibited North Carolina from recognizing or performing same-sex marriages.
To read the bill in its entirety, click here.