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NY Gay Marriage Lawsuit: Evangelical Church Group

By Cynthia Hsu, Esq. on July 26, 2011 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

The first New York gay marriage lawsuit has been filed by the New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms, a group led by Reverend Jason J. McGuire.

The lawsuit comes down days after the same-sex marriage bill came into effect on Sunday. Hundreds of same-sex weddings have already been performed in the state.

The lawsuit seeks to make the Marriage Equality Act null, and also seeks to overturn all of the marriages that were performed under the new act, according to the complaint. The conservative group is arguing that the state legislature violated the Open Meetings Law when they passed the bill.

The lawsuit also says that the Governor and the state legislature ignored a three-day waiting period that is required by law before a bill can be acted upon, the New York Daily News reports.

The government's response to the lawsuit? "The plaintiffs lack a basic understanding of the laws of New York," said Josh Vlasto, a spokesman for Governor Cuomo, to The New York Times.

The New York Open Meetings Law requires that every meeting of a public body be open to the public. Furthermore, the enforcement provision allows a court to have the power, in its discretion, to declare that the public body violated the law and that the actions taken with the violation as void.

Note, however, that the court has the power and the discretion to use the power to declare the actions void. It is not mandated to do so under the law.

The New York gay marriage lawsuit filed by the New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms will likely not be the only lawsuit filed against the controversial new law. And, whether or not the lawsuit will succeed is up to the courts - though gay marriages are continuing despite the lawsuit, reports the AP.

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