April 26, 2016
New York-based attorney Roberta Kaplan, who litigated and won the case to end http://www.jacksonfreepress.com/news/2015/jul/02/mississippis-marriage-equality-fight-overor-it/">Mississippi's ban on same-sex marriage, sent a letter to Mississippi leaders regarding House Bill 1523 on Monday, http://www.slate.com/blogs/outward/2016/04/26/roberta_kaplan_challenges_anti_lgbtq_mississippi_law.html">Slate reported, saying she and her legal team at Paul, Weiss LLC had "serious concerns" about the bill violating a permanent injunction issued last July in the http://www.jacksonfreepress.com/documents/2015/jul/02/us-circuit-judge-jerry-smiths-opinion-campaign-sou/">Campaign for Southern Equality v. Bryant case.
http://www.southernequality.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/april-25-2016-RAK-letter.pdf">The letter states that "the July 2015 injunction requires that Mississippi, in accordance with the dictates of the United States Constitution, treat any gay or lesbian couple that seeks to marry the same as any straight couple that seeks to do so." The letter was addressed to Gov. Phil Bryant, Attorney General Jim Hood and Judy Moulder at the State Registrar for Vital Records. Kaplan asks that they ensure that the 2015 injunction is complied with and that those state officers provide them with:
- notices for any individual who has filed recusal notices pursuant to HB 1523
- a full and complete explanation of all steps that each individual seeking recusal (or any person acting on behalf of that individual, including in a supervisory capacity) will take to ensure that gay and lesbian couples are not impeded or delayed when seeking to marry in the relevant county
- whether the individual seeking recusal intends to continue issuing marriage licenses to straight couples, while at the same time refusing to participate in issuing licenses to gay and lesbian couples
Kaplan also asks Mississippi leaders to "agree to provide us with this same information in connection with any clerks who seek to recuse themselves in the future within one week after such information becomes available."
In her letter, Kaplan sets a deadline of May 2, 2016, for state officers to comply with their request "either in whole or in part, so we can be in a position to evaluate whether we will need to seek further relief from the Court."