Rep. Mike Turner: Stop ALL Marriages To Prevent Marriage Equality

Oklahoma state Rep. Mike Turner (R-District 82) has come up with the perfect idea to circumvent the Constitution and protect “traditional marriage.” He has decided to introduce legislation to ban ALL marriage in the state.

Turner has introduced what is called a “shell bill,” which has no actual provisions and can be amended at a later time to respond to any court rulings concerning same-sex marriage. The move comes within 10 days of a federal court ruling which stated Oklahoma’s same-sex marriage ban is unconstitutional discrimination.

The court found that the ban violated the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause. In his ruling, US District Judge Terrance Kern rejected the claims of “child-rearing” and “moral reasons” by stating the exclusion could not even survive the most basic level of court review.

Kern wrote:

“Equal protection is at the very heart of our legal system and central to our consent to be governed. It is not a scarce commodity to be meted out begrudgingly or in short portions.?Therefore, the majority view in Oklahoma must give way to individual constitutional rights. The Bishop couple has been in a loving, committed relationships for many years. They own property together, wish to retire together, wish to make medical decisions for one another, and wish to be recognized as a married couple with all its attendant rights and responsibilities. Part A of the Oklahoma Constitutional Amendment excludes the Bishop couple, and all otherwise eligible same-sex couples, from this privilege without a legally sufficient justification.”

Turner, and other Oklahoma Republicans, must have not heard the message though because now they are intent on throwing out all marriage for any couple in the state regardless of sexual orientation.

According to Turner:

“[My constituents are] willing to have that discussion about whether marriage needs to be regulated by the state at all.”

When asked if it was his intent for the state of Oklahoma to “deny marriage period,” Turner replied:

“That would definitely be a realistic opportunity, and it’s something that would be part of the discussion.”

Watch the video below, courtesy of – Oklahoma City, OK – News, Weather, Video and Sports |

Oklahoma American Civil Liberties Union executive director Ryan Kiesel states the ACLU has been unable to find any example of a state banning all marriage for any effort.

Kiesel said:

“I think that, especially with issues like this, [these lawmakers are] out of touch with most Oklahomans. Moving forward I think we’ll see less efforts like this.”

In fact, these sorts of tactics are not unheard of in cases of discrimination. During the Jim Crow south, legislators closed all schools in order to resist the US Supreme Court and prevent integration. In at least one county, public schools were closed for five years in defiance of the Supreme Court’s order to desegregate schools.

Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin (R) tried a similar tactic this past November by refusing to process military spouse benefit applications at any state-owned National Guard bases rather than accommodate same-sex military couples. The state was able to remain in compliance however by referring all couples to federal facilities in the state.

If anyone else is keeping track of the Republican talking points, apparently gays are still bad, but now…premarital sex, children born out of wedlock, and single mothers on welfare…are good?

"...And so I say to all of you here and to all in the nation tonight that those who appeal to you to hold on to the past do so at the cost of denying you your future. This great rich, restless country can offer opportunity and education and hope to all--all, black and white, North and South, sharecropper and city dweller. These are the enemies: poverty, ignorance, disease. They are our enemies, not our fellow man, not our neighbor. And these enemies too--poverty, disease and ignorance--we shall overcome." ~excerpt from speech by President Lyndon B Johnson, given two days after the start of the Selma Marches in an event that became known as Bloody Sunday.