Texas Supreme Court to Deliberate Judge’s Refusal to Perform Same-Sex Marriages
The Texas Supreme Court is scheduled to review Dianne Hensley’s case, where she is suing the state’s commission on judicial conduct for refusing to officiate same-sex weddings. The case could have far-reaching implications for the rights of same-sex couples in Texas.
The Texas Supreme Court is preparing to examine the lawsuit brought by Dianne Hensley, a justice of the peace in Waco, Texas, who has been sued for her refusal to conduct wedding ceremonies for same-sex couples.
Hensley initiated this legal action against the state’s commission on judicial conduct in December 2019, claiming that her rights under the Texas Religious Freedom Restoration Act were violated.
However, a state district judge dismissed her lawsuit in June 2021, and this decision was upheld by an appellate court. The commission asserted that Hensley’s refusal to officiate same-sex weddings raised questions about her impartiality as a judge, particularly concerning individuals’ sexual orientation.
The Texas Supreme Court is now tasked with determining whether to revive this lawsuit, which could have profound implications for the rights of same-sex couples in Texas.
The case essentially centers on whether local officials are obliged to adhere to federal court rulings upholding same-sex marriage rights.