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Federal judge strikes down Alabama same‑sex marriage ban

Alabama plaintiffs Cari Searcy, left, and Kim McKeand, in a 2006 portrait with their son Khaya in Mobile, Ala.
Alabama plaintiffs Cari Searcy, left, and Kim McKeand, in a 2006 portrait with their son Khaya in Mobile, Ala. Rob Carr, AP (File)

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The ruling was met with elation from advocates of marriage rights but outrage from some conservatives in the Deep South state.

“It is outrageous when a single unelected and unaccountable federal judge can overturn the will of millions of Alabamians who stand in firm support of the Sanctity of Marriage Act,” Republican Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard said in a statement. “The Legislature will encourage a vigorous appeals process, and we will continue defending the Christian conservative values that make Alabama a special place to live.”

A group working for gay rights across the country called the ruling historic.

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“Judge Granade’s ruling today affirms what we already know to be true – that all loving, committed Alabama couples should have the right to marry,” said Sarah Warbelow, the legal director for the Human Rights Campaign.

Granade rejected arguments from Alabama that the state had an interest in promoting marriage between men and women for the benefit of children. She said the children of gay couples are “just as worthy of protection and recognition by the State as are the children being raised by opposite-sex parents.”

“The attorney general does not explain how allowing or recognizing same-sex marriage between two consenting adults will prevent heterosexual parents or other biological kin from caring for their biological children,” Granade wrote.

The opinion and order is here

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