Houston Democrat Jessica Farrar has filed HB 1701 to remove Texas’ “homosexual conduct” law from the Texas Penal Code.
Despite the U.S. Supreme Court finding the law unconstitutional in the 2003 case Lawrence v. Texas, the law remains on the books as a misdemeanor offense, even though it is not enforceable.
State Rep. Garnet Coleman, D-Houston, who has filed the bill every session since the law was found unconstitutional, said he planned to file the legislation again this year.
State Sen. Jose Rodriquez, D-El Paso, filed the companion bill, SB 538, earlier this month. It has been assigned to the State Affairs Committee.
“There is absolutely no justification for this antiquated and unconstitutional provision to remain on the books,” Equality Texas Executive Director Chuck Smith said. “It is past time for this relic of the past to be repealed from the Texas Penal Code.”
Read the full release below.