Compiled by Dawn Wolfe Gutterman
California: The state judge who ruled that gay couples should be allowed to marry stayed his decision March 30 pending the outcome of anticipated appeals to make it clear that no gay couples can get married in California until appeals have run their course. On March 14, the San Francisco County Superior Court judge ruled that gay couples in California can marry, and that the state’s law against it was unconstitutional.
Connecticut: A lesbian couple married in Massachusetts cannot get an annulment in Connecticut because the state does not recognize such marriages, a judge has ruled. The Hartford Superior Court judge ruled that the marriage was invalid, so Connecticut had nothing to dissolve. She also said the court had no jurisdiction because Connecticut does not recognize marriages between same-sex couples.
Minnesota: The Minnesota House voted 77-56 to put an equal marriage rights ban before voters next year on March 31. The bill would ask voters to amend the state constitution to define marriage exclusively as a union between a man and a woman. An attempt to remove same-sex civil unions and domestic partnerships from the constitutional amendment was defeated.
New York: On March 31, the New York Court of Appeals (the state’s highest court) announced that a middle-level state appeals court needs to hear the lawsuit seeking marriage for same-sex couples before the high court considers hearing the case. Last month, a state judge ruled that same-sex couples must be allowed to marry under the state Constitution.
South Carolina: A House bill that would let voters decide next year whether the state Constitution should be changed to bar equal marriage rights headed to the Senate Judiciary Committee March 31. The amendment says marriage is “exclusively defined as a union between one man and one woman” and all other unions are void.
Utah: Utah State University’s attorney has concluded that Amendment 3, which banned equal marriage rights, likely prohibits extending the Logan school’s medical benefits to same-sex couples. Amendment 3 says that marriage consist only of the legal union between a man and a woman, and no other domestic union may be recognized as a marriage or given the same or substantially equal legal effect.