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Once a constitutional amendment is passed in North Carolina, can it be challenged in the courts?

John Peaspanen
StarNews

Constitutional amendments may be challenged. With voter approval on May 8 of Amendment One, which bans gay marriage in North Carolina, it is possible that a challenge will be put forth in the future.

Norma Reid Houston, lecturer in public law and government at the School of Government, at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, said, “Certainly any litigant who has standing to challenge the amendment may do so. I certainly cannot predict whether a challenge to Amendment One would be successful.”

Houston’s colleague at the School of Government, Michael Crowell, professor of public law and government, said such an amendment could be challenged at the federal level.

Crowell said, “The most likely challenge would be in federal court, arguing that the state constitutional amendment, if adopted, violates a federal constitutional right, such as the right to equal protection. Federal constitutional rights trump the state constitution.”

RELATED LINKS:

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steve zandy

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One Response to “ Once a constitutional amendment is passed in North Carolina, can it be challenged in the courts?”

  1. On May 9, 2012 at 3:21 pm Elizabeth Betts wrote:

    The article states “Amendment One, which bans gay marriage in North Carolina…”

    Gay Marriage is already illegal and the poorly worded amendement does a lot more than “ban gay marriage.”

    Some have stated that the reason it passed is because many voters didn’t really understand what they were voting on.

    How can we expect the average voter to be knowlegable of such things when the newspapers can’t even report it correctly?



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