(Madrid) A second Spanish judge has asked
for a ruling on same-sex marriage from the country's Constitutional Court.
Judge Francisco Garcia, from Gran Canaria, has
refused to register three same-sex marriages saying the law which allows gay
marriage is likely in violation of the Constitution.
Garcia said the Constitution specifically states
that marriage is between a man and a woman. He has asked the high court to
declare the gay marriage law invalid.
"Heterosexuality is the fundamental and
identifying element of the institution of marriage," Garcia told to the
Spanish news agency Efe.
Last month a judge in the southern town of
Alicante also asked for a ruling for the Constitutional Court. (story)
Judge Laura Alabau made the announcement in
refusing to grant a license to a lesbian couple. Since them, she has blocked at
least one other same-sex marriage.
The law granting gay and lesbian couples the
right to marry passed Parliament in June. (story)
It altered the definition of marriage in the Civil Code to read "Marriage
shall have the same requirements and effects whether both parties are of the
same or of the opposite sex."
If Spain's Constitutional Court decides to hear
the case it has the power to nullify the new law.
Spain's major opposition party said it may join
the constitutional challenge. The Partido Popular was the main opponent to the
legislation in Parliament.
The government said it is confident the law will
survive any constitutional challenge. On Wednesday, the justice ministry
overturned a decision by a court in Catalonia that prevented foreign same-sex
couples from marrying. (story)