Liberty Counsel files motion after Florida’s traditional marriage laws threatened
Feb 26, 2014
By JONI B. HANNIGAN

MIAMI (FBW)—Liberty Counsel Feb. 25 filed a motion to intervene in a lawsuit initiated by homosexual activists who are seeking to declare Florida’s marriage laws unconstitutional. The international, non-profit organization advocating religious freedom—Liberty Council is representing a diverse coalition of citizen groups. 

Florida Family Action—a separate sister organization to Florida Family Policy Council—successfully led a 2008 grassroots ballot effort to defend the traditional definition of marriage. 

Orlando-based Liberty Counsel, led by Mathew and Anita Staver, is representing the parties seeking to intervene in Parento v. Rubin, according to a Liberty Counsel news release. 

"Marriage is a foundational societal institution that transcends racial, political, and religious lines," said Mathew Staver. 

In 2008 Florida Family Action campaign backed Amendment 2, the largest grassroots effort on any ballot issue in Florida’s history. With 62 percent of the vote, it was the first constitutional amendment to clear a heightened 60 percent threshold for voter approval. 

After failing to convince the public to adopt a non-traditional view of "marriage," homosexual activists filed suit in January, asking Miami judge Sarah Zabel to throw out the votes of 8 million Floridians, and to judicially impose homosexual marriage in Florida, the news release stated. 

FFA President John Stemberger, after the lawsuit was filed in January, warned no one should try and redefine marriage. 

"The six same-sex plaintiff couples in this lawsuit appear to be very sincere and are certainly free to self-define themselves and have private civil commitment ceremonies,” Stemberger said. “But they—and the activists who motivated them to file this suit—are not free to redefine a fundamental human institution which has served civilization since the beginning of time.” 

In addition to Florida Family Action, Liberty Counsel represents two other umbrella civil rights organizations, People United To Lead the Struggle for Equality (P.U.L.S.E.), and the Florida Democratic League (FDL). P.U.L.S.E. is a civil rights umbrella organization comprised of 35 civic groups and thousands of African-Americans and other minorities. FDL is a Hispanic-led human rights organizations in Florida, with thousands of members throughout the state, many of which are registered Democrats.

Horatio Mihet, Liberty Counsel’s senior litigation counselor, predicted the lawsuit is not in keeping with the will of the voters.

"This lawsuit threatens to disenfranchise millions of Floridians who voted to affirm natural marriage, and to supplant the clearly expressed will of a super majority of Florida's voters with the radical vision of homosexual activists who cannot win at the ballot box,” Mihet said.

Staver and Mihet said Liberty Counsel is committed to providing a  “vigorous defense for marriage and voting rights.”

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