Thursday, July 25, 2013

Montgomery County Pennsylvania Issues Same Sex Marriage Licenses – Same Sex Marriage Performed and Registered – “State’s Constitution Unconstitutional”

"Craig Andrussier, a non-denominational minister from Landsdale, said the two women had contacted him early this morning after they applied for a license at the courthouse."

Andrussier said he met with the Limerick couple and performed a quick ceremony, signed the license then returned to the courthouse to file it with the county.

“We tried to legalize this process as quick as possible,” he said. “That’s why I’m down here filing in person instead of putting in the mail and waiting a day or two. I didn’t want anything to change between now and then.”

“This is further proof that Governor (Tom) Corbett should refuse to defend discrimination in Pennsylvania,” said Alan Kennedy-Shaffer, president of Harrisburg Hope, a bipartisan advocacy group. “ There is momentum for marriage equality and it will become law in Pennsylvania sooner than many people think.”

The announcement from Hanes comes just two weeks after a lawsuit was filed in federal court challenging Pennsylvania marriage law.

“Based upon the advice of [my solicitor], my own analysis of the law and mindful of the Attorney General’s belief that Pennsylvania’s marriage laws are unconstitutional, I decided to come down on the right side of history and the law, and was prepared to issue a license,” Hanes said in a press release.

On July 9, the ACLU of Pennsylvania on behalf of 23 gay and lesbian plaintiffs, and two of their teenage children, filed a lawsuit in U.S. Middle District Court seeking to overturn Pennsylvania's Defense of Marriage Act and to have the state recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states.

Along with Corbett and Attorney General Kathleen Kane, the Whitewood v. Corbett lawsuit names the Washington County Register of Wills - Mary Jo Poknis -  as one of the defendants. Register of Wills issue marriage licenses.

Kane swiftly announced she would not defend the state’s ban on same-sex marriages.


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