Lawyers for Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett have filed a legal brief which claims that he is exempt from being named a defendant in marriage equality lawsuits filed in the federal court system.
Gov. Tom Corbett’s legal team argued that the U.S. Constitution provides state officials immunity from being sued in federal court without their consent. The governor’s lawyers contend that Corbett and Health Secretary Michael Wolf should be dismissed as defendants because of a 1972 Supreme Court ruling that says federal courts lack jurisdiction over state marriage laws. In a separate filing, lawyers for state Attorney General Kathleen Kane argued that she should not be a defendant because she is not enforcing the law. In addition to Corbett, Kane and Wolf, two county officials are named in the lawsuit. Lawyers in the case are scheduled to meet on Wednesday with Judge John E. Jones III to discuss scheduling matters, including the timing of a trial.
The suit in question was filed by the ACLU in July. Corbett has hired an outside legal team to defend against the suit.
RELATED: A separate suit has been filed by Montgomery County Clerk Bruce Hanes. That case will be heard by the state Commonwealth Court.