Marriage Equality

Since 2000, 16 countries (Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, South Africa, Sweden, United Kingdom, Uruguay) have legalized same-sex marriage, as have parts of Mexico. In the United Kingdom, the law legalizing same-sex marriage in England and Wales takes effect March 29, 2014.

In the United States, same-sex marriage is legal in 17 states (California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois*, Iowa, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington), and in the District of Columbia. (*Illinois same-sex marriage law takes effect on June 1, 2014. Same-sex marriage was legal in Utah for 17 days following federal court ruling striking down that state’s gay marriage ban. Marriage equality in Utah is on hold pending appeal.)

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Judge Jerome A. Holmes

Judge has sharp questions for attorneys at Okla. same-sex marriage hearing

Thursday, April 17, 2014
DENVER — A judge in Colorado who will play a pivotal role deciding whether gays should be allowed to wed in the United States asked pointed questions Thursday about whether Oklahoma can legally ban the unions. [ Read more → ]
Mel Evans, APNewark Mayor and Senator-elect Cory Booker, right, shares a laugh as he officiates the first same-sex marriage for Joesph Panessidi, center right, 65, and Orville Bell, 65, in Newark City hall just after midnight Monday, Oct. 21, 2013.

Nearly 3,000 gay couples say ‘I do’ in N.J. in first 6 months of marriage equality

Thursday, April 17, 2014
Through the end of March, a total of 2,955 same-sex couples have wed in New Jersey since Oct. 21, when marriage equality began under the orders of a state judge, reports the New Jersey Star Ledger. [ Read more → ]
U.S. Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio)

Portman on Ohio ruling: Marriage equality shouldn’t come from the courts

Thursday, April 17, 2014
COLUMBIS, Ohio -- U.S. Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), the first GOP senator to support marriage equality for same-sex couples, says he’s not a fan of Monday’s federal court ruling that would force the state to recognize same-sex marriages from other jurisdictions. [ Read more → ]
Sharon Baldwin, left, and Mary Bishop are plaintiffs challenging Oklahoma's ban on same-sex marriage

Same-sex marriage has second appellate court hearing

Thursday, April 17, 2014
DENVER -- Same-sex marriage has its second hearing at the federal appellate level Thursday as lawyers for two Oklahoma women and the county clerk who would not give them a marriage license square off in a Denver courtroom. [ Read more → ]
Attorney Charles Cooper, the lawyer who argued before the Supreme Court in favor of upholding California’s ban on gay marriage learned while he was handling the case that one of his children is gay and now is helping her plan her wedding with another woman. Cooper says his view of same-sex marriage is evolving after having argued in court that gay unions could undermine marriages between a man and a woman.

Lawyer who argued in favor of Prop 8 now planning gay daughter’s wedding

Thursday, April 17, 2014
WASHINGTON — The lawyer who argued before the Supreme Court in favor of upholding California's ban on same-sex marriage learned while he was handling the case that one of his children is gay and now is helping her plan her wedding with another woman. [ Read more → ]
Arkansas

Hearing set in challenge to Ark. same-sex marriage ban

Thursday, April 17, 2014
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Advocates of ending Arkansas' ban on same-sex marriage are to make their case Thursday before a circuit judge in Pulaski County. [ Read more → ]
Sharon Baldwin, left, and her partner Mary Bishop speak with members of the media before boarding a plane to Denver at Tulsa International Airport, Wednesday, April 16, 2014. Oklahomans for Equality gathered at Tulsa International Airport with their signs for a send off celebration in support for the plaintiffs, including Baldwin and Bishop, in the Oklahoma Marriage Equality lawsuit as they head to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver.

Tenth Circuit, Round 2: Court takes up Oklahoma same-sex marriage case

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
OKLAHOMA CITY — Lawyers for two Oklahoma women and the county clerk who would not give them a marriage license go before a federal appeals court with a familiar question for the judges: Did the state's voters single out gay people for unfair treatment when they defined marriage as a union between one man and one woman? [ Read more → ]
Arizona

Judge won’t merge suits challenging Ariz. same-sex marriage ban

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
PHOENIX -- A federal judge is refusing to combine two separately filed lawsuits challenging Arizona's ban on same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
Wisconsin Supreme Court

Wis. couple asks state Supreme Court to strike down same-sex marriage ban

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
MADISON, Wis. -- A same-sex couple has asked the Wisconsin Supreme Court to strike down the state's gay marriage ban. [ Read more → ]
U.S. District Judge Timothy S. Black

Judge stays ruling on Ohio recognition of lawful same-sex marriages

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
CINCINNATI -- A federal judge has put on hold the majority of what attorneys have called a "momentous" change to Ohio's gay marriage law. [ Read more → ]
U.S. District Judge David Lawson

Judge takes up Michigan ban on domestic partner benefits

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
DETROIT -- A ban on benefits for domestic partners in Michigan public schools and local governments might not save much money, but that's not a reason to throw out the law, a lawyer for the state told a federal judge Tuesday. [ Read more → ]
Dr. Paul Melchert (left) and his husband James Zimmerman, with their twin boys.

Study: Marriage leads to improved health for same-sex couples and their children

Tuesday, April 15, 2014
A recent report from The New England Journal of Medicine finds that marriage equality has positive effects on public health by improving access to healthcare for same-sex couples and their children, and reducing the risks of anxiety, depression and other mental health problems when a couple’s relationship is not legally recognized. [ Read more → ]
Pastor Javier Soto

Pastor says God sparked massive fire in Chile over same-sex civil unions

Tuesday, April 15, 2014
A Chilean pastor said God sparked a massive forest fire in the coastal city of Valparaíso over the weekend in response to lawmakers' consideration of a bill that would legalize civil unions for same-sex couples. [ Read more → ]
Attorney Al Gerhardstein, left, stands with several same-sex couples at a news conference, Friday, April 4, 2014, in Cincinnati. Civil rights attorneys are arguing in Federal Court on Friday that a federal judge should prohibit Ohio officials from enforcing the state's ban on gay marriage.

Federal judge considers staying Ohio same-sex marriage ruling

Tuesday, April 15, 2014
CINCINNATI -- A federal judge who ordered Ohio to recognize the marriages of same-sex couples performed in other states says he's inclined to issue a stay of his decision pending appeal, meaning most gay couples living in the state would see no immediate tangible expansion of their rights. [ Read more → ]
Ohio-flag

Language approved for ballot initiative to repeal Ohio same-sex marriage ban

Monday, April 14, 2014
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine has certified the language in a new version of a proposed constitutional amendment aimed at overturning the state's same-sex marriage ban. [ Read more → ]
Ohio-sign

Federal judge orders Ohio to recognize out-of-state same-sex marriages

Monday, April 14, 2014
CINCINNATI -- A federal judge on Monday ordered Ohio authorities to recognize the marriages of same-sex couples performed in other states, the latest court victory for gay rights supporters. [ Read more → ]
Malta-flag

Malta Parliament votes to legalize same-sex civil unions, adoptions

Monday, April 14, 2014
VALLETTA, Malta -- Same-sex couples are set to gain the right to obtain legal recognition for their relationship as the Maltese Parliament prepares to vote on the Civil Unions Bill in its third and final reading on Monday evening. [ Read more → ]
U.S. District Judge Timothy S. Black

Federal judge expected to issue key ruling on Ohio same-sex marriage ban

Monday, April 14, 2014
CINCINNATI -- A federal judge is expected to issue what could be the most sweeping ruling yet for gay marriage in Ohio by ordering the state to recognize the marriages of gay couples who wed in other states that allow same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
Brianne Bowen, The Ann Arbor News (AP)Mark Thiesmeyer and Matt Hook of Ann Arbor get married by Rev. Roger Pohl after more than 12 years together outside the Washtenaw County Administration Building in Ann Arbor, Mich., Saturday, March 22, 2014, the day after a federal court struck down Michigan's ban on gay marriage.

ACLU files suit to enforce legal rights of newly married Mich. same-sex couples

Monday, April 14, 2014
DETROIT -- The American Civil Liberties Union says it's filing a lawsuit to enforce the legal rights of about 300 same-sex couples who were married during a one-day window between separate federal court decisions. [ Read more → ]
Michigan

Michigan ban on same-sex domestic partner benefits back in court

Monday, April 14, 2014
DETROIT -- A month after Michigan's same-sex marriage ban was overturned, the state is vigorously defending another law that's being challenged by gays and lesbians: a prohibition on domestic partner benefits for employees in public schools and local governments. [ Read more → ]
Nicole, left, and Pam Yorksmith, a Cincinnati couple who married in California in 2008 and have a 3-year-old son, are among the four couples who filed the lawsuit challenging Ohio's gay marriage ban.

Ohio same-sex couples eagerly await Monday’s marriage ruling

Sunday, April 13, 2014
[caption id="attachment_135316" align="alignleft" width="665"][media-credit name="Al Behrman, AP" align="alignleft" width="665"][/media-credit] Nicole, left, and Pam Yorksmith, a Cincinnati couple who married in California in 2008 and have a 3-year-old son, are among the four couples who filed the lawsuit challenging Ohio's gay marriage ban.[/caption] CINCINNATI -- Pam... [ Read more → ]
Nevada

Nevada GOP removes opposition to gay marriage, abortion from platform

Sunday, April 13, 2014
LAS VEGAS --- The Nevada Republican Party stripped opposition to abortion and gay marriage from its platform Saturday as state convention delegates instead focused on judging fellow Republicans on their worthiness to serve in office and adherence to GOP values. [ Read more → ]
Sean Reyes

Utah AG says defense of state’s gay marriage ban is not about hate

Friday, April 11, 2014
SALT LAKE CITY — Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes said Friday during a rally of gay marriage opponents that his defense of the state's same-sex marriage ban in a federal appeals court is not motivated by hate. [ Read more → ]
GOP

Nevada Republican party mulls social issues’ place in platform

Friday, April 11, 2014
LAS VEGAS -- Nevada Republicans meeting for a statewide convention in Las Vegas will decide this weekend whether to follow the lead of the state's largest county and strip hot-button social issues from the party platform. [ Read more → ]
Attorney General Mark Herring (D-Va.)

Va. attorney general files brief supporting same-sex marriage

Friday, April 11, 2014
RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia's attorney general has told an appellate court reviewing a judge's ruling that the state's same-sex marriage ban is unconstitutional that gays and lesbians have just as much right to marry as interracial and heterosexual couples. [ Read more → ]
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