Federal appeals court extends stay on Michigan's same-sex marria - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Federal appeals court extends stay on Michigan's same-sex marriage ban

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MICHIGAN (WJRT) -

(03/25/14) - A federal appeals court has indefinitely suspended a judge's decision that allowed gay marriage in Michigan.
    
The ruling late Tuesday means Michigan's ban on same-sex marriage stays on the books while the appeals court takes more time to consider the case. The panel ruled 2-1.
    
The ban was thrown out Friday by a federal judge in Detroit. Hundreds of couples were married Saturday before the appeals court put a temporary halt to the judge's ruling.

Jody Valley and Elaine Thomason, from the Lansing area, were one of those couples.

"It's been a wild ride," said Valley. One that continues.
    
The court now has extended the stay after reading arguments from the state of Michigan and attorneys for two Detroit-area nurses who challenged the ban.

The decision was expected Wednesday.

Same sex marriage supporters gathered at the Capitol, Tuesday afternoon, to call on Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette to "stand down."

State Senator, and Michigan Senate Minority Leader, Gretchen Whitmer also called on Governor Rick Snyder to act.

"Abide by the judicial ruling and order your AG to stand down," Whitmer (D-East Lansing) said.

Schuette is leading the appeal and said Monday, "My job, as attorney general, is to defend and protect to the constitution.  I took an oath."

Couples who married Saturday are also waiting for clarification on if their marriages will be recognized by the state. The ACLU said it is preparing to launch legal challenges if the state doesn't deem them valid.

Nearly 300 couples married in the four counties performing ceremonies Saturday morning and early afternoon.

Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., issued the following statement Tuesday, after the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a stay of a lower-court ruling rejecting Michigan's ban on gay marriages while the case is under appeal:

"I hope today's ruling is only a temporary setback in the march toward equality, and that when the appeals court considers this issue, which I hope comes promptly, it will find as other courts have that this form of discrimination violates the fundamental American principle of equality under the law."

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