2 Steps Forward for Gay Marriage

A judge rules for gay couples in Ohio, and gay inmates can marry in Calif.

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 4, 2013 8:40 AM CDT

(Newser) – A federal judge in Ohio sided with a gay couple yesterday, ordering that David Michener be listed as the surviving spouse on the death certificate of William Herbert Ives—even though Ohio does not recognize gay marriage. The men, who have three children and had been together 18 years, wed in Delaware in July. Ives died unexpectedly last week, the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. It's the second time in as many months the judge ruled that the state must recognize an out-of-state same-sex marriage, Reuters reports. In July, he granted a temporary order allowing another man to be listed as "spouse" on a death certificate after his partner, who has a terminal illness, dies.

Michener will also join the lawsuit filed by the first couple, John Arthur and James Obergefell, challenging Ohio's law banning gay marriage as unconstitutional. The suit argues that Ohio recognizes other types of out-of-state marriages that would not have been allowed in the state, such as marriages between minors or cousins. In his ruling yesterday, the judge cited the Supreme Court's rejection of DOMA, and noted, "The issue whether states can refuse to recognize out-of-state same-sex marriages is now surely headed to the fore." Gay marriage saw another victory in California, where inmates are now allowed to marry partners of the same sex, the Sacramento Bee reports. One exception: Two gay inmates can't marry each other, due to "safety concerns," according to a memo from the Department of Corrections.

  (Shutterstock)
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