Florida will, gasp, not issue an amicus brief in favor of discrimination

Timothy Kincaid

January 31st, 2015

bondiI’ve been amused and amazed about the level to which our community and our allies have convinced ourselves that Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is Enemy Number One in the battle for marriage equality.

With every step, we’ve railed against the evil evil Bondi and her (half-hearted) defense of Florida’s anti-gay marriage ban. We’ve decried the “bigotry” in her language such as “We want uniformity” and gasped at the blatant animus of “It’s my job to defend the (state) constitution whether I not I agree with it”.

We’ve reported with baited breath that she’s “been filing briefs at a furious pace” in response to eight marriage cases filed against the state. And though other attorneys general (some of them Democrats) have also taken the position that defending the bans are part of their job (with little response), we’ve been stunned at Bondi’s identical stance.

When Bondi’s filings said that federal interference in state marriage laws would “impose significant public harm”, newspapers pulled those few words from the brief and announced that Bondi had said “harm”, ohmigod, she said “harm”, she must think that gay marriages cause HARM!

Yesterday, the media again was shocked, shocked I say, and breathlessly marveled that Bondi was continuing to fight against gay marriage. As evidence, they pointed to her response to inquiries about whether Florida would be filing an amicus brief in marriage cases before the Supreme Court. She, gasp, said that her office hadn’t yet decided! She just won’t give up!!

So today it’s news, NEWS, NEWS!! that Bondi backed down. The state of Florida is not filing a brief with the court. (Herald Tribune)

Friday evening, Bondi’s office said the attorney general would not be filing an amicus brief as the nation’s highest court in April hears a group of cases from the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal that has upheld same-sex marriage bans in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee.

Which is simply shocking!

Unless, of course, you’ve noticed all along that Bondi’s defense of Florida’s marriage ban has been half-assed, perfunctory, and accompanied by a refusal to demean the plaintiffs or their families.


January 31st, 2015

I had actually been wondering if it was all in my head or if Pam Bondi was getting especially intense heat relative to her actions in resisting pro-marriage rulings. Is there some political reason for this I’m missing?

Priya Lynn

January 31st, 2015

“When Bondi’s filings said that federal interference in state marriage laws would “impose significant public harm”, newspapers pulled those few words from the brief and announced that Bondi had said “harm”, ohmigod, she said “harm”, she must think that gay marriages cause HARM!”.

Well, obviously she does – duh.


January 31st, 2015

Bondi works for a Republican governor. While she doesn’t need to show outright hostility, it’s also important that she not tarnish the governor’s record by seeming pro-gay.

Basically Republicans are now practicing token resistance to still win primaries.


January 31st, 2015

> Bondi’s defense of Florida’s marriage ban has been half-assed, perfunctory…

Hanlon’s razor: Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

> … and accompanied by a refusal to demean the plaintiffs or their families.

She’s defending a law that bars a class of citizens from certain rights/responsibilities available to others. That in itself is demeaning.

I can’t tell if you’ve missed your medication, or just trolling/click-baiting with this post.


January 31st, 2015

I’m a resident of Florida, so I definitely have an opinion. During elections, Bondi has never hesitated to say awful things about gay people and gay marriage. She’s frequently talked about the harm our marriages would do to “traditional” marriage, while she has had two of those herself, and is now, in violation of Florida laws, shacking up without benefit of marriage with a man. (Yes those laws are still on the books here in Florida.)

She is despicable because everything she has done has not been based on her belief system, nor her perception of her duties…it has always been a coldly calculated political play with her. She did enter some ugly briefs, and then, as she saw the writing on the wall, started to try to moderate her language…”Oh, all I ever wanted was consistency.” Again, because there was starting to be a price to pay for her bigoted acts.

Now, you might say, “she’s a politician, so of course it was politically motivated.” I’d agree, but in every case, I consider that the most craven of reasons. If you’re a true believer, I might not agree, and might think you’re on the wrong side of history, but I’d have some respect that you were acting based on your beliefs. But when you set out to harm a group of people for NOTHING more than political gain, you are the worst kind of human.

Does she deserve any worse treatment than any other AG who went down this path…no, but none of those other AG’s deserve anything less than Bondi received here in Florida. In other words, if you think she was treated worse that some other AGs, then that just means those other AGs weren’t treated derided enough.

She’s backing off now because we have marriage, the state hasn’t slide off into the ocean yet (but given all the BP Oil on the bottom of the Gulf, that ain’t out of the question), the Supreme Court is going to decide the issue, and she’d rather not have any more to do with the issue, because it is getting close to time for her to announce for whatever next office she’s going for (Senate or Governor). She wants as much distance and deniability as she muster about her involvement in these cases.

Pam Bondi is most decidedly one of those “I’ve got mine so f’ you” Republicans, and deserves every bit of derision she’s experienced and more.


January 31st, 2015

Also in the 11th circuit… late last week the judge hearing a federal marriage case in Georgia put his trial on hold but allowed it to be immediately taken up by the appeals court. The plaintiffs have 10 days to file the appeals and are hoping to have the 11th circuit hear cases from Alabama, Florida and Georgia at the same time. http://lyldenlawnews.com/2015/01/30/sex-marriage-issue-grows-appeals-court/


February 1st, 2015


You beat me to it, although I might substitute “incompetence” for stupidity…

enough already

February 1st, 2015

It’s the sheer hatred of this woman which makes me furious.
How dare she deny me my rights while working hard to add fornication to adultery to marriage wrecking?

She’s despicable. Even by the very low standards I set for Christians, she’s one of the worst.


February 1st, 2015

I’m sorry, not the point but I had to stop reading and do this: It’s Attorneys General.

Mark F.

February 2nd, 2015

What will pro-marriage people do with their time when they no longer have people like Bondi to be “enraged” with. How about we wait for the SCOTUS decision and save our anger for an adverse decision there, which seems more unlikely each day.

Priya Lynn

February 2nd, 2015

An imnportant question Mark because without people like Bondi to be enraged at pro-marriage people will be utterly devoid of things to do.

Eric Payne

February 2nd, 2015

Speaking of Attorneys General:

The Attorney General of Alabama has filed a brief with the Eleventh Circuit in his state’s appeal saying, essentially, his office has nothing to do with the issuance of marriage licensing, so Plaintiffs are suing the wrong party.

Does he seriously think that will fly?


February 2nd, 2015

Indeed, Eric. Imagine the Judicial hilarity that will ensue as the AG denies he is the correct party to sue, while the department that does issue licenses will claim that they have no jurisdiction to defend the law. If you can’t defend it, avoid it.

Timothy Kincaid

February 2nd, 2015


Ooops. You’re right. I revised above.

Eric Payne

February 3rd, 2015

I have a favor to ask of you, eric.

Just asking a favor so that we might be differentiated — we don’t want people to think you and I are the same person, after all.

Ned Flaherty

February 4th, 2015

BTB and Timothy Kincaid claim that they reported the Florida marriage articles with “baited” breath.

No, they did not.

That would only be true if they ate a box of Mrs. Paul’s Fish Sticks and then wrote each article without brushing their teeth and rinsing their mouths.

What they did do is report with “bated” breath, i.e., they held their breath over the breathy breathlessness of the breadth of their news.

Priya Lynn

February 4th, 2015

Mmmmmmmm, bait…arguggurhgurrark [/homer simpson]

Eric Payne

February 4th, 2015

I thought “Baited Breath” was the name of an undercover sting operation focusing on blow jobs….

Timothy Kincaid

February 4th, 2015

thanks, Ned.

Usually my typos are just that, typos. This time I truly didn’t know that the proper word was “bated” rather than “baited”.

eric m

February 12th, 2015

Sure, Eric. Didn’t see what you suggested, but I’m guessing this would be a decent fix?

Priya’- Nice one. Homer isms (or anything remotely Homeric) are always welcome everywhere they are found.

Timothy- thank you (For the work you all do on the site generally, but the fix specifically) I know it was an honest mistake.

Priya Lynn

February 12th, 2015

; )

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