Michigan's witness in gay marriage trial barred - New York News

Michigan's witness in gay marriage trial barred

Posted: Updated:
April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse

DETROIT (AP) -- A judge barred an Ivy League law student Monday from testifying at Michigan's gay marriage trial, saying he might become an expert witness someday but his opinions wouldn't help sway this case.

It was a blow for the Michigan attorney general's office, which had offered Sherif Girgis as its first witness in defense of a 2004 constitutional amendment that bars same-sex marriage.

Girgis has written and talked about a historical defense of marriage between a man and a woman going back to ancient philosophers such as Cicero and Plato. He's pursuing a law degree at Yale University and a doctorate in philosophy in Princeton University. 

"The fact is you're still a student. Someone else is still grading your papers," said attorney Ken Mogill, co-counsel for two Detroit-area nurses challenging the gay-marriage ban.

U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman said Girgis is smart, articulate and bound to become an expert in his field.

"But not quite yet," Friedman said.

The trial entered its second week Monday. Earlier in the day, Lisa Brown, a Democrat and the elected clerk of Oakland County, was asked about an email sent last October from the attorney general's office during a hearing in the case.

Attorney General Bill Schuette, a Republican, had warned counties not to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, even if the judge threw out the ban at that time. The state said other legal moves would be in the works.

Friedman, however, took no action and instead ordered a trial, which began Feb. 25.

"My job is to follow what the judge says, not what the attorney general says," said Brown, who supports gay marriage.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Trench collapse in Pittsfield Township

    Trench collapse in Pittsfield Township

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 5:24 PM EDT2014-07-30 21:24:07 GMT
    Emergency crews are at the scene of an apparent trench collapse in Pittsfield Township.
    Emergency crews are at the scene of an apparent trench collapse in Pittsfield Township.
  • Two in custody after search connected to Armada teen's murder

    Two in custody after search connected to Armada teen's murder

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 5:22 PM EDT2014-07-30 21:22:13 GMT
    The FBI and state police were at a home on Marquette Road in Goodells, Mich. most of Wednesday executing an investigative search warrant related to the murder of 14-year-old April Millsap.
    The FBI and state police were at a home on Marquette Road in Goodells, Mich. most of Wednesday executing an investigative search warrant related to the murder of 14-year-old April Millsap.
  • Reward offered for info on who killed father of six in his driveway

    Reward offered for info on who killed father of six in his driveway

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 5:16 PM EDT2014-07-30 21:16:49 GMT
    A Detroit businessman and father of six, is gunned down in front of his own home.Tonight, his grieving family is demanding justice for Jacob Fry-Hooper, who was murdered in June.He was heading home from his brother's house on the night he was killed.Hooper had just pulled into his driveway. But as he was getting out of the car, someone fired several shots, killing him.Crime Stoppers is offering a $2,500 reward for tips that can lead to an arrest. To help, call 1-800-SPEAK-UP. Tipsters can rem...
    A Detroit businessman and father of six, is gunned down in front of his own home.Tonight, his grieving family is demanding justice for Jacob Fry-Hooper, who was murdered in June.He was heading home from his brother's house on the night he was killed.Hooper had just pulled into his driveway. But as he was getting out of the car, someone fired several shots, killing him.Crime Stoppers is offering a $2,500 reward for tips that can lead to an arrest. To help, call 1-800-SPEAK-UP. Tipsters can rem...
  • Download the FOX 2 Apps


  • FOX 2 News Five-Day Forecast
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • NYC subway report card

    NYC subway report card

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 5:09 PM EDT2014-07-30 21:09:16 GMT
    "A mixed bag": That's how the Straphangers Campaign characterizes New York City subways; some good parts and some bad. For example, the C train breaks down most often, not surprising since the line has 50-year-old cars. But C trains were also the cleanest in the transit system.Straphangers said the worst subway trains were the IRT's No. 2.
    "A mixed bag": That's how the Straphangers Campaign characterizes New York City subways; some good parts and some bad. For example, the C train breaks down most often, not surprising since the line has 50-year-old cars. But C trains were also the cleanest in the transit system.Straphangers said the worst subway trains were the IRT's No. 2.
  • Plane evacuated after landing at LaGuardia

    Plane evacuated after landing at LaGuardia

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 4:44 PM EDT2014-07-30 20:44:01 GMT
    A small jetliner made an emergency landing at LaGuardia Airport Wednesday afternoon shortly after taking off, authorities said. American Eagle Flight 3340, carrying 44 passengers and three crew members, departed LaGuardia heading for Knoxville, Tenn., when it had to turn around because of a maintenance issue, the Port Authority said.
    A small jetliner made an emergency landing at LaGuardia Airport Wednesday afternoon shortly after taking off, authorities said. American Eagle Flight 3340, carrying 44 passengers and three crew members, departed LaGuardia heading for Knoxville, Tenn., when it had to turn around because of a maintenance issue, the Port Authority said.
  • Newark police officer shot

    Newark police officer shot

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 4:33 PM EDT2014-07-30 20:33:01 GMT
    A Newark police officer was shot in the leg while on duty Wednesday afternoon. The officer, an 18-year veteran of the force assigned to the 5th Precinct, suffered a gunshot wound in his lower leg, according to the head of the police union. He was brought to University Hospital in Newark and appears to be in "relatively good shape," according to James Stewart Jr., the union head.
    A Newark police officer was shot in the leg while on duty Wednesday afternoon. The officer, an 18-year veteran of the force assigned to the 5th Precinct, suffered a gunshot wound in his lower leg, according to the head of the police union. He was brought to University Hospital in Newark and appears to be in "relatively good shape," according to James Stewart Jr., the union head.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices