“Kill the Gays” Initiative: Attorney General Kamala Harris seeks court approval to block measure from circulation
Harris asked a court Wednesday to allow her to refuse a title and summary for the Sodomite Suppression Act, an initiative by Huntington Beach attorney Matthew McLaughlin that proposes to “put to death by bullets to the head” gays and lesbians in California. On February 26, McLaughlin paid a $200 filing fee and submitted the necessary paperwork to collect signatures for his initiative. Under state law, the attorney general is compelled to provide initiative proponents with a title and summary.
“This proposal not only threatens public safety, it is patently unconstitutional, utterly reprehensible, and has no place in a civil society,” Harris, a Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, said in a press release. “If the Court does not grant this relief, my office will be forced to issue a title and summary for a proposal that seeks to legalize discrimination and vigilantism.”
Human Rights Campaign praises Harris’ action
The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender civil rights organization praised Harris for blocking the measure.
“This disgusting, barbaric measure should be stopped in its tracks, and once again Attorney General Harris has demonstrated leadership in standing up for the rights and dignity of LGBT Californians,” said Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign. “It is our sincere hope that the Supreme Court of California gives her the authority to prevent it from advancing.”
Earlier this week, a CalNewsroom.com review of state and national voter records failed to locate voter registration information for Matthew Gregory McLaughlin. Although there is no explicit requirement that a person be registered to vote in order to begin the initiative process with the State Attorney General’s office, state law mandates that the petition to the Secretary of State be submitted by a registered voter.
More Absurd Initiatives
The Sodomite Suppression Act has inspired a wave of other outrageous ballot measures. Outraged by the anti-gay measure, Charlotte Laws has proposed an initiative, the “Intolerant Jackass Act,” that would require McLaughlin to attend sensitivity training and contribute $5,000 to a pro-gay organization.
Another measure, The President of California Act, would replace the position of governor with a state president.