CORPUS CHRISTI (KIII NEWS) - The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a Texas case on gay marriage benefits Monday, keeping in place the statewide ruling that same-sex couples are not entitled to the same benefits as straight couples.
The decision has the Coastal Bend LGBTQ community speaking out.
Many gay rights activists say this is a step backward for the LGBTQ community. One local married gay man said he doesn't know when he will have insurance at all now.
The Supreme Court's rejection of the case, which originated in Houston, is sending a message that many in the gay community didn't want to hear.
"The ruling, when I just found out about it, it was kind of like a punch to the gut," A.J. Galvan said. "It hurts."
The court let stand a Texas ruling that says same-sex married couples are not entitled to spousal benefits under employee insurance plans. Galvan married Steven Brent in June of this year here in Corpus Christi and said this now puts their family plan at a standstill.
"I don't have insurance, and Steven just got insured with his job, so we were actually really counting on getting on plans together and working toward taking care of ourselves, each other, and the family we want to start," Galvan said.
It's an issue that has 27th Congressional District candidate Eric Holguin speaking out, worried about the scope of how many people locally and statewide this affects.
"If you work for a school, if you work for the government, if your paycheck comes from taxpayer money, then this affects you," Holguin said.
Holguin said 65-percent of Texans approve of same-sex marriage and believes the federal government is being hypocritical with what taxpayer money can and cannot pay for.
"They're saying they don't want taxpayer dollars to pay for same-sex benefits, but yet as we've seen recently and in our region, our taxpayer dollars are being paid for some Republican's sexual misconduct," Holguin said.
The U.S. justices did not issue a comment with their ruling, but the local LGBTQ community hopes the case will make it back to the high court, but with a heavy heart for now.
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