A federal judge has ruled that Texas’s ban on same-sex marriage violates the equal protection guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution. According to Judge Orlando Garcia, a Clinton appointee, the state’s marriage laws deny same-sex couples the right to marry, and therefore “demean their dignity for no legitimate reason.” Garcia stayed his decision pending appeal.
The case was brought by two couples: Victor Holmes and Mark Phariss, who want to marry in Texas, and Cleopatra de Leon and Nicole Dimetman, who want their Massachusetts marriage recognized. Dimetman and De Leon are raising a child together.
Garcia is the seventh judge to rule against a ban on same-sex marriage since the Supreme Court overturned the Defense of Marriage Act last summer.