AUSTRALIA: Hight Court Rules Against Same-Sex Marriage In Capital Territory
two JMG readers, have gotten married in the Australia Capital Territory (ACT.) Those marriages have just been ruled invalid. Via the Australian:
The High Court has unanimously struck down the ACT's gay marriage laws. The decision will mean that about two dozen week-old marriages have no legal effect. The ACT Marriage Equality (Same Sex) laws passed the territory's legislative assembly in October, but only came into effect last month and couples were required to provide four weeks' notice before conducting wedding ceremonies. As of today, about 20 couples have been married to date under the ACT's laws, with the first ceremonies conducted on Saturday. Had the nation's top court upheld the ACT's gay marriage legislation it would have opened the door to similar laws being passed across the country, pressuring the government to make it legal at a national level. The commonwealth government sought an expedited hearing in the High Court arguing the national capital's laws were inconsistent with federal legislation and unconstitutional. Federal government lawyers argued in the High Court that the commonwealth marriage act was intended to ensure that state and territories did not operate as different countries when it came to determining whether a couple was married. The High Court determined that the federal parliament has the power under the Australian constitution to legislate on same-sex marriage, and that whether or not same-sex marriages are legalised is a matter for the federal parliament.