3 Counties in Colorado Issuing Same-sex Marriage Licenses After Court Ruling

Boulder County Clerk and Recorder Hillary Hall testifies in court Wednesday. (Cliff Grassmick / Daily Camera)
Boulder County Clerk and Recorder Hillary Hall testifies in court Wednesday. (Cliff Grassmick / Daily Camera)

Soon after a judge ruled that the Boulder County clerk could continue issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples while the courts considered Colorado’s ban on gay marriage, clerks in Denver and Pueblo counties said they would do the same.

State Atty. Gen. John Suthers vowed a swift appeal to the state’s highest court on the recent Colorado gay marriage rulings. On Wednesday a U.S. District Court judge ruled that the state’s ban was unconstitutional.

“It is paramount that we have statewide uniformity on this issue and avoid the confusion caused by differing county-by-county interpretations of whether same-sex marriage is currently recognized,” Suthers said in a statement. “Therefore, we will act swiftly in an attempt to prevent a legal patchwork quilt from forming.”

Boulder County Clerk and Recorder Hillary Hall began issuing same-sex marriage licenses June 25, the same day the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Utah’s ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional. The 10th Circuit includes Colorado, which does not allow same-sex marriage but does recognize civil unions.

Although the appeals court stayed its ruling, Hall said the court had affirmed gay marriage, and she thus began issuing the licenses.

The state filed suit against Hall last week, seeking an injunction to force her to stop issuing the licenses and declare invalid about 100 she had already issued.

Boulder District Court Judge Andrew Hartman ruled Thursday that the state had failed to prove its claim that Hall’s “disobedience irreparably harms” the state and the couples.

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SOURCE: MAYA SRIKRISHNAN 
The Los Angeles Times

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