Lawsuit Filed Over Same-Sex Marriage

Posted at 10:06 PM, Jan 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-22 00:10:17-05

A lawsuit has been filed in Williamson County to stop county clerks from issuing same-sex marriage licenses.

The lawsuit was filed today in Williamson County Chancery Court. It asks the court to decide if Tennessee's marriage statute is invalid.

If it is, then the clerk shouldn't be able to issue a marriage license. Former state lawmaker David Fowler filed the suit Thursday.

He represents five people including three ministers.

They assert if Tennessee's marriage law is unconstitutional then there is no law in Tennessee, and no one can get a marriage license until the law is fixed by the state legislature.

Fowler said state lawmakers should pass a new law and if supporters of same sex marriage don't like it they can challenge it in court.

During a press conference today Fowler was asked if that happened and the challenge made it all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court wouldn't the results still be the same.

“If we get there and the court says you have to have a license, or excuse me we're affirming our decision then at that point I think the legislature can say, well we're going to repeal the statute.  You can't make a state pass a law. You've never said a state can pass a law,” he said.

That would mean the state would stop issuing marriage licenses. Fowler was asked why he chose to file the lawsuit in Williamson County. He said it was simply because he and the people he represent live there.