The Liberty Counsel today filed an emergency petition for a writ of mandamus to the Alabama Supreme Court, demanding that the entire bench join Chief Justice Roy Moore in ordering state probate judges to cease issuing same-sex marriage licenses. From the petition:
The duty of each Respondent probate judge not to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples is unequivocal under both the Marriage Amendment and the Marriage Act. Relators have no other remedy against Respondent probate judges’ issuance of illegal marriage licenses, in derogation of their public duty, because the public cannot be a party to a marriage license proceeding before any Respondent and is not otherwise able to appeal Respondents’ illegal issuance of licenses.
The Marriage Amendment, the Marriage Act, and the Administrative Order could not be more clear: Alabama probate judges are prohibited from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. It is equally clear that neither the Searcy nor the Strawser Injunction, nor any other authority compels or authorizes probate judges to disregard Alabama’s marriage laws. Nonetheless, some probate judges havedone just that, creating confusion and disarray in the issuance of marriage licenses in the state. This Court should remove the confusion and disarray by giving Alabama probate judges a clear judicial pronouncement that Alabama law prohibits the issuance of marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Via press release from the Liberty Counsel:
“Many Alabama probate judges are acting lawlessly,” said Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel. “Alabama probate judges do not have discretion to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Neither the Searcy nor the Strawser Injunction requires Alabama probate judges to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples,” Staver pointed out. “The only remedy to this lawlessness is mandamus relief, an order from the Alabama Supreme Court to command probate judges to perform their ministerial duty not to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples,” Staver concluded.