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US: Pennsylvania Attorney General and Governor released as defendants in equal marriage case

Joseph McCormick January 16, 2014
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The Governor and Attorney General in the US state of Pennsylvania have been officially removed as defendants in a case challenging the state’s ban on equal marriage.

The ACLU and the Philadelphia law firm Hangley Aronchick Segal Pudlin and Schiller, filed the complaint earlier this week in the US District Court, in an effort to have the state’s Defense of Marriage Act deemed unconstitutional.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania (ACLU), and the state agreed to swap out Governor Tom Corbett and Attorney General Kathleen Kane, in November.

Commonwealth Court Judge Dan Pellegrini has now officially agreed to requests from both Kane and Corbett to be removed from the lawsuit.

Washington County Register of Wills Mary Jo Poknis has also been released from the lawsuit as her office is no longer directly relevant to the complaint.


The Governor will be replaced with his secretaries of revenue and health.

A 1996 state law defines marriage as between one man and one woman. The judge overseeing a challenge to Pennsylvania’s ban on equal marriage, earlier this month paused before setting a trial date in the case.

In a brief statement , Kane said she would not defend the act, which denies same-sex couples the right to marry.

Governor Corbett, who has held the position since 2011, made a remark 4 October comparing equal marriage to incest.

The Governor was asked about a statement his lawyers made in August, when they told a court that issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples was no different from issuing marriage licenses to children.

More: Civil partnerships, equal marriage, gay marriage, gay wedding, kathleen kane, lesbian marriage, lesbian wedding, marriage, marriage equality, same sex marriage, Same-sex wedding, tom corbett, US, wedding

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