Abbott: No Special Session on Same-Sex Marriage

Gov. Greg Abbott told a San Antonio radio station on Monday that he won't call a special session on same-sex marriage restrictions, even though conservative leaders pleaded via letter for him to do so.

Gov. Greg Abbott speaks to reporters at  Texas Public Policy Foundation's grand opening of new building on April 21st, 2015

Gov. Greg Abbott apparently really meant it when he said last week he will not call a special session of the Legislature.

In an interview with San Antonio’s WOAI-AM on Monday, Abbott said calls for a session on same-sex marriage haven’t changed his mind about bringing back the lawmakers who left town last week.

“I do not anticipate any special session,” he said. “They got their job done on time and don't require any overtime.”

He said as much a week ago, as lawmakers brought their 140-day regular session to a close. But in a letter after the regular session ended, several groups wrote a public request to the governor to call lawmakers back to consider legislation that would prohibit county clerks in the state from issuing same-sex marriage licenses. The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule soon on whether states can outlaw those marriages or refuse to recognize marriages granted by other states.

The Texas Constitution already defines marriage as between a man and a woman. The legislation the groups requested was, in fact, filed during the regular legislative session. It didn’t pass, partly because of the adverse reaction a similar law attracted in Indiana. Another proposal would protect religious leaders from being forced “to solemnize any marriage or provide services, accommodations, facilities, goods or privileges for a purpose related to the solemnization, formation or celebration of any marriage if the action would cause the organization or individual to violate a sincerely held religious belief.”

That one, Senate Bill 2065, passed and awaits action from the governor.