Oct 16, 2014 1:29 PM
Gay marriage developments: Wyoming holds out
The Associated Press
Fewer and fewer states are holding on to oppose gay marriage as court rulings across the nation strike down bans on same-sex unions by the day.
Among the holdouts are conservative states such as Wyoming, whose court defiance stands against a tide of rulings that give hope to those who want to see gay marriage legalized in every state.
Here are some recent developments on the issue:
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has blocked gay marriage in Alaska while the state asks the U.S. Supreme Court to restore its ban.
Unless the high court acts, the temporary stay imposed by the federal appeals court for the West will dissolve Friday afternoon, allowing gay marriages to go forward.
A District Court judge struck down Alaska's 15-year-old gay marriage ban, which helped spark the national debate, saying Sunday that it violated protections of the U.S. Constitution that guarantee due process and equal protection under the law. Gay couples began applying for marriage certificates Monday, beginning a three-day clock to when ceremonies could be held. Some couples, however, received waivers and have already married.
North Carolina officials who refuse to perform civil marriages for gay couples can be suspended or fired over such opposition, according to a new state directive.
The memo said state magistrates who refuse to marry gay or lesbian couples are violating their sworn oaths. The move came after a county official refused to marry two men, citing religious objections, and others followed.
A federal judge last week struck down North Carolina's same-sex marriage ban.
A District Judge scheduled a hearing Thursday on a lawsuit filed by four same-sex couples seeking to force the state to allow gay marriage in response to a federal court rulings that apply to Wyoming.
Wyoming is among the most conservative states in the nation with Republicans holding all three of its congressional seats, all five statewide elected offices and the vast majority of its state legislative seats.
Citing the Supreme Court decision, advocates for gay marriage in Wyoming say the state should immediately cease enforcing a law that defines marriage as between a man and woman only. But Wyoming county clerks have been unwilling to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples until they hear definitively that they can do so.