Unenforced WI law would prosecute out-of-state marriages

Same-sex Wisconsin couples planning to wed in California have something new—or rather, old—to worry about—or not. From The Advocate Online:  

A Wisconsin law makes it a criminal offense to enter into a marriage outside the state if that marriage were illegal in Wisconsin.

The law was passed decades ago to prevent underage couples from crossing state lines to marry, but it could be used against same-sex couples, The Capital Times of Madison reported Wednesday.

Violators could, for some reason, be prosecuted for fraud, and punished with nine months in prison, a $10,000 fine, or both. That is, they could be, if the law were enforced at the discretion of  district attorneys, which it apparently hasn’t been for years. Fair Wisconsin isn’t worrying, even as the Wisconsin Family Counsel pushes to prosecute couples who take advantage of California’s recent decision. (You got your damn amendment already; let’s not get bigoted and greedy now, WFC.) Fortunately, no one with real power seems to have any intention of enforcing the law—not even WFC’s representatives. From the Journal Sentinel:  

Senate Republican Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau), one of the authors of the marriage amendment, said he had a hard time seeing how the law would apply to same-sex couples here, because marriages that wouldn’t be recognized in Wisconsin are strictly ceremonial.

“You’re not going to go after some couple because they got married in California,” Fitzgerald said.

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2 Responses

  1. How pathetically weak minded can some people be….

    I mean, it is a shame that every can’t just accept that their pretty little book might be wrong for another time and just accept that some people are gay and should be treated the same as the rest of us.

    Marriage wasn’t even originally Christian (Im guessing what the WFC is and I will try not to slander them…that much..) it was around in cultures before Christianity. It was not even originally covered by the Church, that only came to be when the Church realized that they could have greater control over people’s souls (bodies) by making sure the Church accepted the marriage.

    If only more people actually understood what they beleived.

    is the WFC a right wing conservative Christian fest or am I guessing wrong

  2. Kel, marriage was around before the Catholic Church (pre-AD 33) but honestly, do you really think Catholics hijacked the idea of marriage as some sort of power play?

    As to all your other points about marriage being in other non-Christian cultures, I guess a Catholic might chalk this up to saying that marriage is part thus of “natural law” and a human universal and absolute and you probably don’t want to go down that road…

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