Just two weeks after repealing and replacing its controversial and costly HB2 "bathroom bill," North Carolina lawmakers have introduced legislation that seeks to invalidate same-sex marriages in the Tar Heel state.
"Marriages, whether created by common law, contracted, or performed outside of North Carolina, between individuals of the same gender are not valid in North Carolina," House Bill 780 states.
The Republican-sponsored bill, titled the Uphold Historical Marriage Act, asserts the U.S. Supreme Court "overstepped its constitutional bounds" when it struck down North Carolina's constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.
"The General Assembly of the State of North Carolina declares that the Obergefell v. Hodges decision of the United States Supreme Court of 2015 is null and void in the State of North Carolina, and that the State of North Carolina shall henceforth uphold and enforce Section 6 of Article XIV of the North Carolina Constitution, the opinion and objection of the United States Supreme Court notwithstanding," the bill reads.
Rep. Deb Butler, one of the only openly LGBTQ lawmakers in the North Carolina General Assembly, called the legislation "despicable."
"Nothing surprises me out of this legislature anymore," Butler told NBC Out. "As if we haven't already been in the national spotlight for all the wrong reasons this year with HB2, we're now going to prove just how draconian and ridiculous we are."
"It seems that these alt-right legislators don't learn from mistakes made, and they feel this sort of damaging and disruptive behavior is somehow going to get them reelected, and I think the contrary will prove true," Butler added.
I guess it's really up to whether or not NC Republicans believe in outright discrimination enough to make this law, because there's nothing stopping them from passing this bill and overriding Gov. Roy Cooper's veto, either.
I'm not sure what the NC GOP is trying to pull here, but the much larger question is what if this leads to actual, outright nullification, and in the Trump era I don't even expect the Sessions-led Justice Department to take action against NC for this.
Why would they? What's stopping Trump from saying "They're right, we refuse to enforce this."
Who's going to make them? We could very well have another Nullification Crisis on our hands, only this time it wouldn't be the Obama administration in charge.
At this point I'd be very concerned.