NEWS 3-3-14

AG spokeswoman says Conway should defend voters’ rights on marriage issue

LEXINGTON, KY—Attorney General Jack Conway’s own spokesperson told a prominent national news outlet that Kentucky’s chief law enforcement official is obligated to defend Kentucky’s marriage law, says a spokesman for the group that helped pass Kentucky’s Marriage Protection Amendment. “So far, the Attorney General has been a no-show in the defense of Kentucky voters on the marriage issue,” said Martin Cothran of The Family Foundation.

Allison Martin, spokeswoman for Conway told the Daily Beast on Jan. 24, “The Kentucky Attorney General, by statute and oath, is required to defend the Kentucky Constitution. It would be inappropriate to discuss personal views on issues that are pending before the court.”

“We appreciate Ms. Martin’s candor,” said Cothran. “We hope Jack Conway appreciates it too.” Cothran said Conway has an obligation to defend the voters against liberal judges who want to create rights out of thin air rather than interpret the laws their elected lawmakers pass and to do it no matter what his personal views are.

Conway is currently considering whether to appeal the ruling in Bourke v. Beshear, which struck down part of Kentucky’s Marriage Amendment, passed by 75 percent of Kentucky voters in 2004.

“That’s his job—the one he was elected to do. The Kentucky Constitution defines marriage as between a man and a woman. He was elected knowing that and he knew it when he swore an oath to support it. If he can’t defend it, then he needs to step down from the attorney general position and let someone else do it.”

“Conway should appeal the case, and when he does, he needs to show up.” Cothran has been critical of the handling of the case by Conway’s office so far, charging last week that Conway was “spiking the case” by offering weak arguments, not signing motions in the case, and not showing up for meetings with the judge.


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