Judge Rejects Oklahoma's Ban on Gay Marriage

But no marriages will take place before appeal
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 14, 2014 4:50 PM CST
Judge Rejects Oklahoma's Bay on Gay Marriage
In this Oct. 10, 2013, photo, Sharon Baldwin, left, and Mary Bishop speak at East Central University in Ada, Okla. They are among the plaintiffs challenging Oklahoma's ban on gay marriage.   (AP Photo/Eric Turner)

Another win for gay marriage, this time in Oklahoma. A federal judge today declared that the state's 10-year-old ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, reports the Tulsa World. But don't expect any rushes to the altar: The judge stayed his ruling pending appeal, and thus no marriages can take place until the matter is definitively settled in court. A federal judge issued a similar decision recently in Utah, though in that state, about 1,300 couples who married before the Supreme Court issued a stay are now in legal limbo.

“Judge (Terence) Kern has come to the conclusion that so many have before him—that the fundamental equality of lesbian and gay couples is guaranteed by the United States Constitution," says Human Rights Campaign chief Chad Griffin. Two gay couples sued in 2004 for the right to marry after state voters approved a constitutional amendment declaring that marriage had to be between a man and a woman. (The news isn't as bright for gay-rights supporters in Nigeria.)

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