Australia’s High Court rejects Same-sex Marriage Law
The High Court has overturned Australia’s first same-sex marriage law.
The court handed down its findings in the landmark case about 12.15pm, although a statement announcing the decision was accidentally published on the court’s website about 20 minutes earlier.The High Court delivered its findings to a silent courtroom. A few couples sobbed silently as Chief Justice Robert French read the unanimous finding that the ACT law was entirely inconsistent with federal marriage legislation.
Couples embraced as they left the courtroom, saying to each other “it’s not over”.
The judges found the ACT law could not operate alongside the federal law as only the Federal Parliament had the power under the constitution to legislate on same sex marriage.
They said the federal Marriage Act did not allow or recognise marriages between same sex couples.
The court held the ACT’s act provided for marriage equality for same sex couples, not, as the territory argued, for a form of legally recognised relationship that was different from marriage.
The finding means the ACT act cannot operate concurrently with the federal act.
"Because the ACT act does not validly provide for the formation of same sex marriages, its provisions about the rights of parties to such marriages and the dissolution of such marriages cannot have separate operation and are also of no effect," the statement said.
"The court held that the whole of the ACT act is of no effect."
ACT Chief Minister Katy Gallagher says marriage equality is now “firmly at the feet” of Prime Minister Tony Abbott and every federal MP.
Ms Gallagher threw the challenge down to Mr Abbott on Thursday after the High Court overturned the ACT law.
"This is not a campaign he can avoid," Ms Gallagher said.
"Over to you, Mr Abbott".
Dozens of couples who married in a five-day window before Thursday’s ruling have now had their marriages declared invalid.
"Dozens of couples who married in a five-day window before Thursday’s ruling have now had their marriages declared invalid."
DECLARED. INVALID. All this trouble, and we thought we finally had it. And just to throw the salt in the wounds, those marriages that got through apparently now mean nothing. Absolutely disgusting.
This morning on 3AW, Prime Minister Tony Abbott said UN climate chief Christiana Figueres was “talking through her hat” when discussing the link between worsening bushfires and global warming.
“Tony Abbott has insulted UN climate chief Christiana Figueres but the real losers out of his science denialism are the future victims of extreme bushfires, droughts and storms in Australia,” Australian Greens Leader Christine Milne said.
“Tony Abbott is the Prime Minister for Science Denialism. He thinks his opinion on global warming outranks the evidence of the best scientists in the world. It is arrogance in the extreme.
“The Prime Minister’s hubris on global warming will see Australia swelter and burn, and our people suffer.” (x)