AG says: Same Gender Marriages Legal in Connecticut Oct. 28
Posted on October 11, 2008
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“My office is reviewing the decision to determine whether any further action is necessary to conform our laws and procedures to the state Supreme Court’s ruling,” he said.
State Sen. Andrew J. McDonald, a Stamford Democrat and leading voice for gay rights in the legislature, praised the ruling, calling it “a bright day for Connecticut and all her citizens.”
He said the legislature must now take steps to clarify state law to comply with the court’s ruling.
“The Supreme Court has admirably done its job and now we are required to do ours,” he said. “And I predict that we will do it in a bipartisan fashion.”
Opponents were obviously disappointed in the ruling. “The court has just usurped democracy in Connecticut and redefined marriage by judicial force,” said Peter Wolfgang, executive director of the Family Institute of Connecticut.
The opposition will now turn its sights to the November election, when voters will be asked whether the state should convene a constitutional convention. “Connecticut voters will have one opportunity on Nov. 4 to reassert their right to self government. We must vote yes.”
Unsatisfied with the civil unions, eight same-sex couples had brought the case, Kerrigan v. the state Commissioner of Public Health, after they were denied marriage licenses in 2004 by the Madison town clerk, who was following instructions issued by the state attorney general’s office.
The state, arguing that civil unions already provide all the rights and protections of marriage, prevailed in a Superior Court ruling in July 2006. The couples appealed the ruling to the Supreme Court, which heard three hours of arguments on the case in May 2007.
Attorney Bennett Klein, arguing on behalf of the couples, told the court that civil unions were a “less prestigious, less advantageous institution.”
The Boston-based Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders law firm representing the couples pursued numerous legal arguments, contending that same-sex marriage was both a fundamental right. MORE
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