Michigan Appeal on Gay Marriage Ruling Dampens Celebrations

Michigan Appeal on Gay Marriage Ruling Dampens Celebrations

Bethany Joy Rozeboom and Mary Winn couldn’t have been much happier after receiving their long-awaited marriage license this weekend after a judge’s ruling that Michigan’s ban on such same-sex unions was illegal.


Someday, we will all just call it “marriage”.

But the Grand Rapids couple and others across Michigan were still in a waiting game Monday to be recognized as legally married on state driver’s licenses, voter registration records, Social Security cards and other documents because the ruling has been put on hold while the state appeals.

Some couples were able to file applications for adoptions and federal tax documents, but fear the process may be hampered by the legal tussle, while similar efforts at state offices were thwarted.

“I feel like it’s been a constant yo-yo, even this whole weekend,” Rozeboom said after being denied an application Monday for a new driver’s license at a Michigan Secretary of State Office branch in Grand Rapids. “Walking out and having a legal marriage license that was signed by a clerk, we felt this is as official as it gets. This felt like we can be done now. But we can’t be done now. Now what?”

U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman struck down the state’s 2004 law banning same-sex marriages on Friday while deciding a 2012 lawsuit by Jayne Rowse and April DeBoer. The couple is raising three adopted children with special needs, but couldn’t jointly adopt each other’s children because that was tied exclusively to marriage in Michigan.

On Saturday morning, four county clerks began issuing marriage licenses before the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati issued an order reinstating Michigan’s ban. Rozeboom and Winn took advantage of the brief legal window and had their marriage officiated.

The appeals court froze Friedman’s decision until at least Wednesday, saying the time-out will “allow a more reasoned consideration” of the state’s request to stop same-sex marriages.

Devin Schindler, a professor at Thomas M. Cooley law school, said it’s the first time a state law banning gay marriage has landed at the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which takes cases from federal courts in Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee. The issue for the court this week is whether to indefinitely suspend Friedman’s decision while the entire case is appealed.

“If the stay is granted, I would read nothing into it,” Schindler said. “It would merely be the court saying we need more time to consider this important matter on the merits.”

FULL ARTICLE HERE: http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/governor-mich-recognize-gay-marriages-23028229


About The Mental Meddler

A quirky, opinionated gay guy who offends both liberal and conservatives.

Posted on March 24, 2014, in LGBT Equality and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Michigan Appeal on Gay Marriage Ruling Dampens Celebrations.

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