Mississippi AG advises counties to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples

Mississippi

Mississippi

Updated 2:05 p.m. CDT

JACKSON, Miss. — Same-sex marriages resumed Monday in Mississippi after some confusion brought them to a halt following a historic Supreme Court decision.

State Attorney General Jim Hood cleared the way for the issuance of licenses Monday with a letter to county circuit clerks.

At least two same-sex couples were married before noon at the Hinds County Courthouse in Jackson. Laurin Locke and Tiffany Brosh of Pearl were the first to wed Monday. They proudly displayed their official marriage license to reporters. They had been unable to obtain a license last week.

On Friday, Hood had urged clerks to refrain from issuing licenses until the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans took action to lift an earlier block on same-sex marriages. The court had decisions pending on same-sex marriage bans in Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas when the Supreme Court ruled Friday that same-sex couples could marry in any state.

Hood changed his advice Monday even though action at the appeals court was still pending. It was unclear when the 5th Circuit would act.

Despite the new advice, officials in three of Mississippi’s 10 most populous counties – DeSoto, Jackson and Jones – tell The Associated Press they’re not issuing licenses to same-sex couples as of early Monday afternoon.

Before Hood issued his Friday advice, three lesbian couples were married in Forrest County amid confusion over whether licenses should be issued immediately.

A federal judge last year overturned Mississippi’s ban on gay marriage but put his own ruling on hold while the state appealed.

Developing story. This report will be updated.

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