USA, Michigan: More Than 300 Couples Married Before Stay – What Now?

Written by scott on March 22nd, 2014

MichiganIt looks like more than 300 Michigan couples got married under the wire before the sixth circuit shut things down.

LGBTQ Nation reports:

Clerks in four Michigan counties have issued more than 300 licenses to same-sex couples. The first to do so Saturday was Ingham County Clerk Barb Byrum, who approved 57 in all. The licenses also issued in Washtenaw, Oakland and Muskegon counties came a day after Michigan’s gay marriage ban was struck down by U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman. A federal appeals court later Saturday suspended same-sex marriages in Michigan, at least until Wednesday.

So what happens to those married couples now?

USA Today reports:

Carl Tobias, a professor at the University of Richmond School of Law in Richmond, Va., said the status of the same-sex marriages in Michigan is not entirely clear while an appeal of a federal judge’s ruling declaring Michigan’s voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional is pending before the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals… Tobias said it’s likely Michigan will refuse to recognize Saturday’s marriages pending their appeals of U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman’s ruling, meaning the Michigan marriages could also be in limbo. Still, “I think they can make a very good argument” that the marriage licenses they were issued are valid, Tobias said.

However, the stay is temporary, for now.

Joe.My.God reports:

The U.S. Appeals Court for the Sixth Circuit has issued a temporary stay on Michigan’s gay marriage case until Wednesday. “To allow a more reasoned consideration of the motion to stay, it is ordered that the district court’s judgment is temporarily stayed until Wednesday,” the order read. Earlier Saturday, the appeals court issued a one-page order directing the attorneys for the same sex couple who had sought to get married to respond to Attorney General Bill Schuette’s request for an emergency stay by noon Tuesday. The order was entered by the appeals court clerk, Deborah Hunt, and didn’t disclose which three-judge panel has been assigned to hear the emergency appeal.

So it’s possible the stay will be lifted next week and same sex couples will once again be able to marry in Michigan.

On a happier note, Towleroad.com brings us the video from the first same sex wedding this morning.

Marsha Caspar (left) and Glenna DeJong, together for 27 years, were married this morning in Mason by Ingham County Clerk Barb Byrum in what was likely the state’s first gay wedding as the office opened at 8 am, an hour earlier than others in the state.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Michigan.

 

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