Could Lawsuit Have North Dakota Join Legal Gay Marriage States?


North Dakota’s first openly gay legislator says a legal challenge to North Dakota’s statewide ban on homosexual marriages, passed on the ballot in 2004, could be coming after court rulings striking down such laws in other states.

Democratic Rep. Joshua Boschee is the first openly gay person elected to the North Dakota Legislature. He says a federal court decision in Oklahoma and one in Utah, resulting in those states’ bans being struck down, may spur lawsuits in North Dakota. …

Boschee says he does not know of any pending lawsuits but he knows people who have expressed interest in challenging North Dakota law.

I’m not sure how much news this is – I wouldn’t expect an activist like Boschee to say anything different when asked this question, whether there’s a lawsuit in the works or not – but I would point to this polling analysis from last year which shows North Dakota hitting majority popular support for gay marriage within the decade.

In North Dakota, like most other places in the country, legal gay marriage is probably inevitable. What I hope is that it can be more often legalized through the democratic process, as opposed to the legal one.

Striking down the ban through the vote of our elected leaders, or a vote of the people, would breed far less division after the fact that courts legalizing gay marriage through fiat. Better for long-term cultural tranquility to have legal gay marriage be the will of the people, rather than the will of a few judges.