Some See Politics as State Officials Fail to Defend Divisive Laws


Once state legislation is passed, it's usually up to the governor and attorney general to see that the law is implemented. But in a number of high-profile cases around the country, top state officials are balking at defending laws on gay marriage, immigration and other socially divisive issues, saying the statutes are unconstitutional and should not be enforced, reports the Washington Post.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane (D) says she won’t defend the state’s ban on same-sex marriage in federal court. In Hawaii, Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D) filed court papers calling that state’s gay marriage ban unconstitutional. And in Indiana, Attorney General Greg Zoeller (R) has come under fire from conservatives for refusing to defend a portion of that state's immigration law. Opponents accuse them of basing their decisions on political, rather than legal, motives, and groups on both sides of the spectrum are planning to target attorneys general in Colorado, Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, New Mexico and Nevada in elections next year.

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