"At bottom, the harm about which petitioners complain is not based on a denial of the right to referendum. Rather, they simply disagree with legislation enacted by our duly-elected council.... A citizens disagreement with constitutionally sound legislation, whether based on political, religious or moral views, does not rise to the level of an actionable harm.''
Part of an ruling by Judge Judith Retchin of the DC Superior Court that finds Harry Jackson's complaint against the DC Board of Elections and Ethics is invalid. Jackson, a socially conservative preacher at a church in Beltsville, MD, has tried for months to rally black residents of the District against gay marriage. He lost his fight against the City Council which, with the lone exception of Marion Barry, twice voted in favor of recognizing same-sex marriages performed in states where it is legal. Jackson held a number of rallys decrying the actions of the Washington, DC lawmakers, and quickly registered as a voter in the District so he could register for a voter-driven referendum against allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry. Before he could even begin using his so-called "army" of signature gatherers, the DCBOEE determined that his ballot initiative would be contrary to the Human Rights Act of DC. Judge Retchin has rejected his appeal and agreed with the DCBOEE. The Council's same-sex marriage recognition bill currently sits in the hands of legislators on Capital Hill since the District still must comply with Constitutional law that gives Federal lawmakers final say over the District's decisions. (Washington Times)