Kentucky AG Won't Appeal Ruling in Favor of Gay Marriage

So governor will hire outside counsel
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 4, 2014 12:28 PM CST
Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway speaks to reporters in a file photo.   (AP Photo/Roger Alford)

(Newser) – An unusual turn of events today on gay marriage in Kentucky: The state's attorney general held an emotional, even tearful news conference in which he announced that he will not appeal a federal judge's ruling that the state must recognize gay marriages performed elsewhere, reports the Louisville Courier-Journal. Doing so would be "defending discrimination," said Jack Conway, who choked up near the end of his announcement. "That will not do." Moments after Conway's news conference, however, Gov. Steve Beshear said he would hire outside counsel to appeal the ruling and seek a stay to keep it from taking effect.

Beshear said he is doing so for clarity, reports USA Today. The federal ruling, he notes, didn't address the constitutionality of Kentucky's own ban on same-sex marriage, and he said it makes sense to wait for the Supreme Court to weigh in and settle the matter once and for all. "Other Kentucky courts may reach different and conflicting decisions," said Beshear, who, like Conway, is a Democrat. "Employers, health care providers, governmental agencies, and others faced with changing rules need a clear and certain roadmap." (Read more Kentucky stories.)

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