Calif. AG Asks Court To Strike Proposed Law Seeking To Execute Gays
CBS News – On Feb. 24, a California lawyer named Matt McLaughlin submitted a proposed ballot initiative to the state attorney general’s office that called for executing gay citizens.
“Any person who willingly touches another person of the same gender for purposes of sexual gratification be put to death by bullets to the head or by any other convenient method,” reads the text of the “Sodomite Suppression Act,” which was marked “received” by the California Attorney General’s Office on Feb. 26.
The proposed bill also calls for a $1 million fine and up to 10 years in prison for distributing “sodomistic propaganda” and would bar anyone “who is a sodomite or who espouses sodomistic propaganda” from holding public office in the state.
On Wednesday, California’s Attorney General Kamala Harris announced that she is asking a court to grant her the permission to keep the proposed initiative from moving forward.
“This proposal not only threatens public safety, it is patently unconstitutional, utterly reprehensible, and has no place in a civil society,” Harris said in her statement.
“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.”
A spokesperson for Harris told 48 Hours’ Crimesider that this is the first time the state’s attorney general has asked the courts to grant permission to halt the progress of a proposed initiative since at least 1978, when the state courts said that an AG could not unilaterally strike a proposed ballot measure. Typically, there is a 35 day public comment and amendment period for a proposed initiative, after which the bill goes to the legislature for analysis and a budget report. The spokesperson said that Harris’ office has received close to 100 complaints about the “Sodomite Suppression Act.”
McLaughlin is listed as a member of the California Bar with an address in Huntington Beach, Calif. According to the state bar website, McLaughlin was admitted to the bar in 1998 and attended George Mason School of Law. He is listed as an active member of the bar.
A spokesperson for the California Bar said in an email that they are “aware of the public’s call for disbarment,” but that because the formal complaint process is confidential they cannot comment further.
McLaughlin did not return multiple calls for comment.