Oklahoma won’t appeal ruling in gay adoption case

Posted on 23 Aug 2007 at 6:52pm
By Associated Press

Law had banned adoptions by out-of-state gays

OKLAHOMA CITY The state plans no further appeals of a court decision that struck down a 2004 law aimed at same-sex adoptive parents.

Earlier this month, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a lower court’s ruling that a state law barring the issuance of birth certificates to Oklahoma children adopted by out-of-state gay couples is unconstitutional.

“We hold that final adoption orders by a state court of competent jurisdiction are judgments that must be given full faith and credit under the Constitution by every other state in the nation,” the ruling said.

Tom Cross, the state Health Department’s deputy general counsel, said Aug. 16 the agency could notmeet the requirements to have the 10th Circuit reconsider its opinion.

The agency does not believe that the U.S. Supreme Court would take up the case, he said.

“We will be issuing birth certificates for all adoptions, whether same-sex or not, for children born in Oklahoma,” Cross said.

Linda Gray Murphy, a lobbyist on gay-rights issues, called the decision a victory.

“When you move to Oklahoma, they can’t segregate out one segment of the population and decide to punish them,” Murphy said.

“The Legislature decided it was a good way to go after one segment of the population.

“The truth was they didn’t punish anyone but the children,” she said. “They claim life was built on family values, yet they want to punish the children.”

Three same-sex couples had sued to strike down the law, arguing that it unconstitutionally singled out a specific group for discrimination.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 24, 2007

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