Wednesday, March 03, 2004

gay marriage licenses in oregon!

and nyack, a second town in new york, plans to start officiating same-sex marriages as well! that makes 4 chains!

but also in new york, state attorney general eliot spitzer is interpreting law to mean same-sex marriage is prohibited.

Mr. Spitzer made his decision based on the language of the Domestic Relations Law's references to "bride and groom" and "husband and wife." But he said New York's marriage laws raise constitutional questions involving equal protection, and that any uncertainty in that regard must be decided by the courts.

the end result of this is that new paltz's mayor jason west now faces 19 criminal charges against him. west is accused of performing weddings without marriage licenses.

Mr. West said he was upholding the state constitution's equal protection requirement by conducting the ceremonies.

Asked about the article of the state law that describes marriages as between a husband and a wife, Mr. West said that the law also had a list of types of marriages that were "voidable," such as any between "close relatives."

"That is a section that explicitly lays out who cannot be married," Mr. West said in the CNN interview. "Same-sex couples are not on that list."

He added, "We have over 1,200 couples on our waiting list."

Mayor West could be fined up to $500 and sentenced to up to a year in jail for each count. Ulster County District Attorney Donald A. Williams, who brought the charges, said a jail term was not being contemplated.

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