Thursday, November 7, 2013

Oklahoma Won't Process Benefits for Married, Same Sex Couples on State Property

Welcome to Oklahoma where the Governor and Attorney General believe that state law trumps federal law!
Oklahoma Governor Ignores Pentagon Criticism, Still Won't Offer Benefits For Married Gay Couples
The Huffington Post  |  By Paige Lavender 
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) said her state's taxpayer-funded National Guard facilities and employees will not process benefits for married, same-sex couples, despite Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel criticizing the move days ago. 
On Nov. 1, Hagel said it's "wrong" for states to defy the Pentagon by refusing benefits for same-sex spouses of military members. 
"Not only does this violate the states' obligation under federal law, their actions have created hardship and inequality by forcing couples to travel long distances to federal military bases to obtain the ID cards they're entitled to," Hagel said during a speech. 
According to the AP, Fallin said Wednesday that all marriage benefits will be processed by federal employees at four federally owned National Guard facilities and at the state's five military bases. Her refusal to allow federal employees to process benefits for same-sex couples is not new -- in September, Fallin ordered the National Guard to stop processing gay couples' requests. 
Tulsa World reports Fallin reached her most recent decision with Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt. She said in a statement that her decision wouldn't put Oklahoma in conflict with federal law despite the apparent conflict with Hagel's orders: 
Oklahoma law is clear. The state of Oklahoma does not recognize same sex marriages, nor does it confer marriage benefits to same sex couples. The decision reached today allows the National Guard to obey Oklahoma law without violating federal rules or policies. It protects the integrity of our state Constitution and sends a message to the federal government that they cannot simply ignore our laws or the will of the people.
Do State Leaders know how dumb that sounds when so many of the bills passed through the overwhelmingly GOP Legislature and signed by the OK Republican Governor get overturned as Unconstitutional.  The one that gets me the most and waste our tax dollars is the requirement that only "ONE" subject be in a bill but that doesn't phase our legislature and Governor as they continue to put more then one subject in a bill at the last minute to sneak it through and then it gets overturned because it is against the Constitution.  That is just dumb but frankly that sums up our State Government.  Don't know how many Press Releases have gone out on grading standards for Oklahoma schools as the Governor and her staff try to clarify the clarification.

New Jersey got the message when their DOMA was overturned by SCOTUS so how long will it be before Oklahoma DOMA is overturned?!
On June 26, 2013, the US Supreme Court ruled DOMA unconstitutional which opened the way for gays to eventually marry in New Jersey.   On October 18, 2013, after a ruling approving gay marriage by the NJ Supreme Court, Gov Christie back off and even though he personally objected, he decided to abide by the law and help the people of New Jersey who were gay and wanted to marry.
Whether you agree or disagree with Governor Christie that is one example of why he was overwhelmingly re-elected in New Jersey as he abides by the law which is rare out of a lot of GOP Governor's today who believe they know more than the Federal Government.  They have taken the 10th Amendment way too far.

Cannot wait to see heads explode one of these days when the Oklahoma DOMA gets overturned. Today's hard right put out in front social issues as their litmus test which I fail miserably because frankly most of their social issues turn me off as they are so hard right and dictatorial  with no wiggle room.  I am going to sit back and laugh when the day arrives that DOMA in Oklahoma is dead.

There is no place in this Country for discrimination on any level and time Oklahoma finally woke up out of the Republican slumber and realized that we are part of the United States first and Oklahoma second.  When the SCOTUS rules, it affects every last American even if the Oklahoma Governor and Attorney General don't think it does.

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