Gay marriage official in Kansas, delayed in S.C.
Gay marriage advocates won another two victories on Wednesday — the Supreme Court made Kansas the 33rd state where same-sex couples can wed, and a federal judge struck down South Carolina’s ban.
The high court declined a request from Kansas officials to block U.S. District Court Judge Daniel Crabtree’s ruling Nov. 4 that struck down the state’s gay marriage ban as a violation of the Constitution.
Two of the nine justices — conservatives Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas — said in the brief court order they would have granted the stay.
In Charleston, U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel ruled that South Carolina is bound by an earlier federal appeals court decision striking down Virginia’s similar law. Gergel’s decision will not take effect for one week, allowing South Carolina time to appeal.
The ruling could allow gay couples to file for marriage licenses or begin receiving them, starting Nov. 20, if the state can’t obtain a further delay through the courts.
“We’re ecstatic,” said Colleen Condon, 44, who filed the lawsuit heard by Gergel after she and her fiancee were denied a marriage license in Charleston last month.