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Two more Ark. counties stop issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples

Tuesday, May 13, 2014
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Supporters of same-sex marriage and others gather in the rotunda of the Pulaski County Courthouse in Little Rock, Ark., Monday, May 12, 2014. Monday was the first day marriage licenses were issued to same-sex couples in the county. Danny Johnston, AP

Supporters of same-sex marriage and others gather in the rotunda of the Pulaski County Courthouse in Little Rock, Ark., Monday, May 12, 2014. Monday was the first day marriage licenses were issued to same-sex couples in the county.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Two more Arkansas counties have stopped issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, saying they will wait to hear from the state’s highest court.

Saline County Chief Deputy Clerk Darlene Westbrook said Tuesday her office is no longer issuing marriage licenses for gay couples. On Monday, clerks had issued six marriage certificates to same-sex couples.

Westbrook says they’re waiting for the Arkansas Supreme Court to rule on whether same-sex marriages are legal in the state.

The Marion County clerk said her office has also stopped issuing same-sex marriage licenses, one day after the office issued a license to a gay couple from Yellville.

Marion County Clerk Dee Carleton said Tuesday that after consulting with attorneys, her office will suspend issuing marriage licenses to gay couples until a ruling is issued by the court.

On Monday, Carroll County clerks offices in Berryville and Eureka Springs also stopped issuing marriage licenses same-sex couples after it was served with a lawsuit by a local attorney.

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Carroll County issued 15 marriage licenses to same-sex couples on Saturday, and about a dozen more on Monday morning.

Arkansas’ attorney general Dustin McDaniel has requested that the state Supreme Court issue a stay in Friday’s ruling by a Pulaski County Circuit Court judge that the marriage ban is unconstitutional.

The court stopped short of issuing an immediate stay, and gave plaintiffs in the case until noon Tuesday to respond to McDaniel’s request.

As of Tuesday morning, only Pulaski and Washington counties are still issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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