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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Pennsylvania county clerk issuing same-sex marriage licenses

Posted By on Wed, Jul 24, 2013 at 3:50 PM

First spotted this on The Maddow Blog and the Harrisburg Patriot-News: Montgomery County Register of Wills Bruce Hanes issued a press release saying he would issue same-sex marriage licenses to anyone who requested one from his office.

And today, according to Maddow Blog, Alicia Terrizzi and Loreen Bloodgood, who have been together 18 years and have two kids, were one of two gay couples to get licenses.

From the Patriot News:
"“Based upon the advice of [my solicitor], my own analysis of the law and mindful of the Attorney General’s belief that Pennsylvania’s marriage laws are unconstitutional, I decided to come down on the right side of history and the law, and was prepared to issue a license,” Hanes said in a press release.

What happens next is kind of a question mark and as the Patriot-News noted, Hanes is receiving support and backlash. But there's reason to be hopeful, advocates say. In Ohio, a federal judge granted some marriage rights to a same-sex couple legally married in Maryland but living in Ohio where gay marriage is banned.

Legal analysts are still determining the impact of the Supreme Court's ruling that struck down part of the federal Defense of Marriage of Act and in Pennsylvania, the ACLU has filed a lawsuit to overturn the statewide ban on same-sex marriage. Attorney General Kathleen Kane has said she won't defend the state's Defense of Marriage of Act.

Stay tuned.

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