The Louisiana House of Representatives voted not to remove the state's sodomy ban today, even though it was declared unconstitutional by the U.S Supreme Court in 2003 and cannot be used to arrest people. The 66-27 vote was overwhelmingly against getting rid of the ban.
The New Orleans Times-Picayune explains that a conservative religious lobbying group led the charge to keep the "crime against nature" law -- which, again, isn't even a real law anymore -- on the books, sending letters to all members of the House saying the unenforceable law is somehow protecting young people from sexual predators and public health risks.
"Louisiana's anti-sodomy statute is consistent with the values of Louisiana residents who consider this behavior to be dangerous, unhealthy and immoral," the letter said, apparently not mentioning that the statute is not consistent with the Constitution and that the East Baton Rogue sheriff's department was forced to apologize for trying to use it to arrest gay men last year.
Rep. Valarie Hodges was the only person to speak against the repeal today, according to the AP, saying it was a "vote of conscience" and "we're not here to rubber-stamp the Supreme Court."
The Supreme Court is the highest court in the country.
All but three of the 27 votes to strike down the "law" were from Democrats, while all but 11 of the 66 votes to keep it were from Republicans. Eleven representatives (most of them Democrats) didn't vote at all.
Later this week, the House will be considering a bill to make the Bible Louisiana's state book. Last week, the state's Senate actually had to discuss whether or not to make chicken boxing (a "legitimate sport" in which chickens box each other) illegal.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.