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Sunday, December 22, 2013
Courts - More on: Utah federal district court judge declares Utah's constitutional and statutory prohibitions against same sex marriage unconstitutional
SALT LAKE CITY — They arrived with children in strollers and with bouquets of flowers, with co-workers and with friends — dozens of gay couples pouring into a government building just a few miles from the headquarters of the Mormon Church to do what many said they thought would never be possible: get a Utah marriage license.
A federal judge’s ruling on Friday afternoon striking down Utah’s ban on same-sex marriages touched off what Mayor Ralph Becker called a “thrilling pandemonium.” Hundreds of people filled the hallways and spilled out onto the sidewalks on Friday, hoping to marry before the county clerk’s offices closed for the weekend — and before an appeals court could stay the decision that made Utah, at least for the moment, the 18th state to allow same-sex marriages.
For gay couples, it was a seismic change in a state where 66 percent of voters approved a ban on same-sex marriage in 2004. The Mormon Church also played a pivotal role in supporting a 2008 measure that banned same-sex marriage in California. * * *
Salt Lake County officials issued more than 100 marriage licenses by the end of the day. But in legal documents filed late Friday, the state said those marriages might now fall under a “cloud of uncertainty” as it fights the decision by Judge Robert J. Shelby. Utah has asked that the judge’s decision be put on hold as it appeals. As of Saturday morning, no court had granted a stay.
Posted by Marcia Oddi on December 22, 2013 08:45 AM
Posted to Courts in general