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Republican Dallas Judge Who Refused to Marry Gay Couples Loses Seat

Justice of the Peace Bill Metzger defeated by pro-equality Democrat.

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Republican Bill Metzger, a justice of the peace in Dallas who refused to perform same-sex marriages, was handily defeated by his Democratic challenger on Tuesday.

Metzger made national news in 2016 when he declared that he would not marry same-sex couples, despite the U.S. Suprme Court’s decision in Obergefell. At the time, Metzger said he was basing his decision on a legal opinion from anti-LGBTQ Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.

“As I said back in June of last year, because of my faith in God as a devout Catholic I will be only be conducting traditional marriages,” Metzger wrote on his Facebook page. “Recently, I have been asked about my beliefs and stance on traditional marriage. I think it is important to point out that this is the law in Texas per Attorney General Ken Paxton’s legal interpretation via opinion KG-0025: ‘Justices of the peace retain religious freedoms, and may claim that the government cannot force them to conduct same-sex wedding ceremonies over their religious objections.’ This came as a result of a request from Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick. As such, it is not true for someone to say they are required by law to conduct a non-traditional wedding.” 

Metzger lost by more than 15,000 votes to Democrat Katina Whitfield, who was endorsed by the Stonewall Democrats of Dallas, an LGBTQ group.

Earlier this year, Metzger was caught on video destroying a campaign sign belonging to a Texas House candidate, Republican Jim Phaup. Coincidentally, Metzger’s wife supported Phaup’s opponent in the GOP primary, Jonathan Boos.

Boos won the primary, but went on to lose Tuesday.

Both Metzger and Boos were endorsed by the anti-LGBTQ hate group Texas Values.





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John Wright

John Wright is the editor of OutSmart magazine. He has spent two decades in the mainstream and LGBTQ media. Most recently, he served as senior editor of Dallas Voice, and covered LGBTQ issues in the state Legislature for The Texas Observer. Born and raised in Philadelphia, Wright earned his bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Florida. He resides in the EaDo area of Houston, where he is currently remodeling a 1930s row house.
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