At 8:30 Wednesday morning, Montgomery County in Pennsylvania began issuing marriage licenses again. They were the first county to allow same-sex couples to marry, but a court order prevented them from doing so even after Governor Tom Corbett declined to appeal a ruling overturning Pennsylvania’s ban on same-sex marriage until today. All of the marriage licenses the county had issued before are still valid.
Who would have thought a GOP politician could COMPLETELY make my day without saying something so ludicrous that I would be curled up in the fetal position holding my sides and laughing for ten minutes? (I’m looking at you, Mike Huckabee) Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett has announced that he will not be appealing a ruling in Whitewood v. Wolf striking down Pennsylvania’s gay marriage ban. Had he appealed, I would have been forced to do actual work like finding out whether these marriage licenses they’ve been handing out will be good in three days when the couples can actually get married. Also, all these couples can get married in three days instead of wondering if they should put those deposits down yet.
Arkansas Gay Marriage Ban Found Unconstitutional in Court
On Friday, Judge Chris Piazza struck down Arkansas’s voter approved ban on same-sex marriage, telling everybody what they already knew, that “The exclusion of a minority for no rational reason is a dangerous precedent.”
Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel has announced his intent to appeal Piazza’s ruling, but has not yet filed an appeal in the case. Fifteen same-sex couples had been issued marriage licenses when McDaniel made his announcement. One of my favorite conservatives Mike Huckabee was so enraged by the ruling that he decided to ignore that whole checks and balances thing the rest of us learned about in elementary school and call for Piazza to be impeached.
Alaska Moves from 49th to 47th!
On Monday, Alaska became the 47th state… to get a lawsuit challenging its same-sex marriage ban! Five couples have sued the state, seeking to bar enforcement of Alaska’s constitutional ban on gay marriage and any state laws prohibiting the recognition of marriage performed in other states or countries or that prevent unmarried same-sex couples from getting married. This means that the only states that have unchallenged bans to marriage equality are Montana and the Dakotas.
Final Briefs Filed in Pennsylvania Case
The state of Pennsylvania filed the last of its briefs in one of the cases challenging its ban on same-sex marriage on May 12. Pennsylvania’s Attorney General declined to defend the ban, saying she could not ethically defend its constitutionality, so the state hired an outside law firm that argued that “plaintiffs rely primarily on speculation and conjecture with regard to harm that may occur in the future.” Maybe someone should ask one of the plaintiffs, which consist of ten couples, two teenage children of same-sex parents, and a widow, if any harm came to them because of this law already? I mean, who wants the pension your husband worked for most of his life anyway? You have fond memories! Both sides of this case have agreed that there is no need for a trial, and the judge can rule at any time now, or he can decide he wants to go ahead with a trial that is scheduled for June 9.
On May 20, 2014 a judge declared Pennsylvania’s ban on marriage equality unconstitutional and declined to stay his ruling, meaning marriage licenses could be distributed immediately. Governor Tom Corbett declined to appeal the ruling, saying that he felt the ruling was unlikely to be overturned.