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AR State Senator Talks Impeachment After Judge's Same Sex Ruling

An Arkansas judge ruled Friday that the state's same sex marriage ban is unconstitutional.
CONWAY, AR -- While many couples are delighted by a judge declaring the state's ban on same sex marriage unconstitutional, some Arkansas leaders say he should lose his job over the ruling.

We talked to people on both sides of the debate.

A same-sex couple, in Conway, helped to bring the first Pride Parade to the community ten years ago.

John Schenck and Robert Loyd say life's been difficult for them ever since because of who they chose to love.

The couple told us they've been called names, insulted even shot at.

So to them, Judge Chris Piazza's ruling is a long-awaited victory.

Schenck and Loyd are two of several plaintiffs who took part in a lawsuit filed in the Pulaski County Circuit Court.

Late Friday afternoon, a judge ruled in their favor by stating the same sex marriage ban in Arkansas was unconstitutional.

Robert Loyd said, "It's making a real impact, taken a long time to make one, but now I see things brighter than I ever have before."

The two married legally in Toronto, but plan to marry again in Arkansas as soon as they get a marriage license.

However, Senator Jason Rapert says the judge's decision should not stand since he says 75% of Arkansans voted in 2004 that marriage is between a man and woman.

He said, "I have been contacted today by other legislators that would seek to start impeachment proceedings in the House of Representatives against Judge Chris Piazza."

The Attorney General's Office plans to appeal the decision.

The office also submitted an emergency stay to the court, which would mean the same sex marriage ban would stay in place until the Supreme Court can make a decision on the issue.

If you would like to follow Melissa Schroeder's reports on Facebook, you can click here and like her page.



UPDATE:

LITTLE ROCK, AR -- Speaker of the House Davy Carter has issued a response to the "impeachment chatter" following the ruling which declares the same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional.

The following is the direct quote from Carter:

"Trying to impeach a Judge because you don't like his or her decision notwithstanding the subject matter is absurd and goes against hundreds of years of the way our great country has conducted business under our three branches of government.  Circuit judges are elected by the people, as are our appellate and state Supreme Court judges.  The appellate process needs to run its course.  Our forefathers saw the importance of our constitution and system of self-governance.  That system has worked well for a long time and make us who we are as a country. I won't support any effort to undermine that."
 


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