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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Salt Lake County clerk issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples

Friday, December 20, 2013
Just hours after a federal judge struck down Utah’s same-sex marriage ban on Friday, a Salt Lake County Clerk issued what may be the first marriage license to a same-sex couple in Utah. [ Read more → ]

BREAKING: Federal judge strikes down Utah’s same-sex marriage ban

Friday, December 20, 2013
SALT LAKE CITY - A federal judge struck down Utah's same-sex marriage ban Friday in a decision that brings a nationwide shift toward allowing gay marriage to a conservative state where the Mormon church has long been against it. [ Read more → ]
Darron Cummings, APIndiana lawmakers will decide whether to ask voters to amend the constitution to ban same-sex marriage when they reconvene in January.

Same-sex marriage supporters see hope in deeply conservative Indiana

Friday, December 20, 2013
INDIANAPOLIS -- In one of the most conservative states in the nation, supporters of same-sex marriage are pondering the unthinkable: a victory, or at least not a loss. [ Read more → ]
Donna Carpenter

N.M. county clerk, deputy resign to avoid issuing marriage licenses to gay couples

Friday, December 20, 2013
PORTALES, N.M. -- Two New Mexico officials responsible for issuing marriage licenses resigned their position on Friday, just one day after the state Supreme Court ordered all 33 county clerks to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. [ Read more → ]
William Sharer

N.M. gay marriage opponents vow to push for constitutional ban

Friday, December 20, 2013
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Same-sex marriage opponents are vowing the fight is not over despite a New Mexico Supreme Court decision Thursday saying it was unconstitutional to bar same-sex couples from getting marriage licenses. [ Read more → ]

Navajo Nation official: N.M. court ruling has no effect on tribe’s gay marriage ban

Friday, December 20, 2013
FARMINGTON, N.M. — A Navajo Nation official says the tribe's own law prohibiting same-sex marriage isn't affected by the New Mexico Supreme Court's decision legalizing marriage for gay and lesbian couples in New Mexico. [ Read more → ]

Poll: Ohio voters likely to support gay marriage if religious exemption included

Friday, December 20, 2013
Ohio voters are split on the idea of same-sex marriage, but they’re far more likely to support it if know religious institutions won’t be forced to wed gay and lesbian couples, a new poll shows. [ Read more → ]
Russell Contreras, APMiriam Rand, 64, left, and Ona Porter, 67, both of Albuquerque, N.M., talk to reporters Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013, after the New Mexico Supreme Court declared it was unconstitutional to deny marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples in the state. The couple were part of a lawsuit that brought the case before the state's highest court.

N.M. same-sex marriage ruling comes following couple’s three-decade wait

Friday, December 20, 2013
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Miriam Rand and Ono Porter were having lunch when the couple got a call that they'd been waiting for, for three decades: New Mexico's Supreme Court had just issued a ruling on same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]

Judge rejects motion to dismiss challenge to Ark. same-sex marriage ban

Friday, December 20, 2013
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — A lawsuit challenging Arkansas' ban on gay marriage is moving closer to a trial. Pulaski County Circuit Judge Chris Piazza on Thursday rejected a motion by government lawyers to dismiss a lawsuit seeking to topple the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
Matt Rourke, APFormer United Methodist pastor Frank Schaefer at a a news conference, Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013, at First United Methodist Church of Germantown in Philadelphia. United Methodist church officials have defrocked Schaefer, who officiated his gay son's wedding in Massachusetts.

Pa. pastor appeals defrocking over officiating gay son’s wedding

Friday, December 20, 2013
PHILADELPHIA -- A United Methodist pastor defrocked for officiating at his son's same-sex wedding has appealed the decision, a move that offered the latest evidence of a split in the nation's largest mainline Protestant denomination and came as yet another state legalized gay marriage. [ Read more → ]

Students walk out in protest of ‘forced’ resignation of gay Catholic school official

Thursday, December 19, 2013
SAMMAMISH, Wash. -- Hundreds of students at Eastside Catholic School in Sammamish, Wash., walked out Thursday to protest the resignation of a vice principal they say was forced out because he recently married his same-sex partner. [ Read more → ]
Roberto Rosales, Albuquerque Journal (AP)Same-sex couples pack the Bernalillo County Clerk's office in Albuquerque on Aug. 27, 2013, with anticipation of obtaining a marriage license.

N.M. Supreme Court declares same-sex marriage legal statewide

Thursday, December 19, 2013
SANTA FE, N.M. -- New Mexico's highest court has legalized same-sex marriage, declaring it is unconstitutional to deny a marriage license to gay and lesbian couples. [ Read more → ]
Rev. Frank Schaefer

Pa. pastor defrocked after performing gay son’s wedding

Thursday, December 19, 2013
NORRISTOWN, Pa. — United Methodist church officials defrocked a pastor from central Pennsylvania on Thursday who violated religious doctrine by officiating his gay son's wedding, and he later said he was shocked by their decision, calling his involvement in the wedding an "act of love." [ Read more → ]
Cottonwood, Ariz.

Cottonwood latest Ariz. city to approve same-sex civil unions

Wednesday, December 18, 2013
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. -- The City of Cottonwood has joined a handful of Arizona communities in approving civil unions. [ Read more → ]
KHON-TVGenora Dancel Kathryn Dennis

Hawaii same-sex marriage pioneer who sparked national debate weds partner

Wednesday, December 18, 2013
HONOLULU -- One of the Hawaii women who sparked the national same-sex marriage battle with a lawsuit more than 20 years ago is now legally married to another woman. [ Read more → ]
Gracie Umana, Outlook Columbus

Poll: 85 percent of Ohio voters know someone who is LGBT

Wednesday, December 18, 2013
Eighty-five percent of Ohio voters know someone who is gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender, according to a new poll by a group that hopes familiarity breeds support for marriage equality. [ Read more → ]
U.S. District Judge Timothy S. Black

Federal judge questions if Ohio officials can refuse to recognize legal gay unions

Wednesday, December 18, 2013
CINCINNATI -- Both sides of a fight over whether same-sex marriage should be recognized on Ohio death certificates despite a statewide constitutional ban were set to argue their cases in front of a federal judge in Cincinnati. [ Read more → ]
U.S. District Judge John E. Jones

Judge in gay marriage suit rejects state argument that court lacks jurisdiction

Tuesday, December 17, 2013
HARRISBURG, Pa. -- A federal judge hearing a challenge to Pennsylvania's law banning recognition of same-sex marriages is keeping the case on track for trial by preventing an appellate review at this stage. [ Read more → ]
The Illinois House votes 61-54 to legalize same-sex marriage.

Retaliation for same-sex marriage support not a 2014 Ill. primary issue – yet

Tuesday, December 17, 2013
CHICAGO -- When Illinois lawmakers considered a landmark vote on same-sex marriage, religious and conservative groups vowed to retaliate against those who voted in favor by grooming potential primary challengers in next year's elections. [ Read more → ]

Indiana State University groups affirm opposition to gay marriage ban

Tuesday, December 17, 2013
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — Indiana State University's faculty, staff and student groups have joined Indiana's growing collegiate opposition to the state's proposed constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
Marc Levy, APACLU lawyer Witold J. Walczak speaks alongside many of the 23 men, women and children who are plaintiffs in a lawsuit seeking to overturn Pa. ban on same-sex marriage.

Pa. accused of stalling in federal challenge to same-sex marriage ban

Monday, December 16, 2013
HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Lawyers in a federal court challenge to Pennsylvania's law that bans same-sex marriage on Monday accused the state's lawyers of using delay tactics and making unreasonable and intrusive requests for information from their clients, including whether they were ever in an opposite-sex relationship. [ Read more → ]

Feds ease rules on health care tax breaks for married, same-sex couples

Monday, December 16, 2013
WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration is letting legally married same-sex couples claim some health care tax benefits for this year. [ Read more → ]
Photos: Charles Rex Arbogast, APPatricia Ewert, left, and Vernita Gray, right, stand before Cook County Judge Patricia Logue, center, as she presides over their wedding ceremony.

Judge OKs Illinois same-sex marriages in cases of life-threatening illnesses

Monday, December 16, 2013
CHICAGO -- Gay couples who want to wed immediately in Illinois because one partner has a life-threatening illness could do so starting Monday, rather than waiting until the state's same-sex law takes effect in June. [ Read more → ]

Social Security begins processing survivor benefits for same-sex spouses

Monday, December 16, 2013
WASHINGTON — The Social Security Administration (SSA) said Monday it has begun processing, and paying, some survivor’s benefits for married, same-sex couples. [ Read more → ]
Rev. Frank Schaefer

Pa. pastor won’t quit voluntarily over officiating at gay son’s wedding

Monday, December 16, 2013
PHILADELPHIA -- A United Methodist pastor vowed Monday to defy a religious order to surrender his credentials for performing a same-sex wedding, saying church officials will have to defrock him if they want him out of the ministry. [ Read more → ]
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