Maryland AG Gansler : High Court Likely to Rule in Recognition of Same-Sex Marriages Performed Elsewhere

A long-awaited opinion by Maryland Attorney General Douglas Gansler was released today. In it, Gansler said the state could recognize same-sex marriages performed elsewhere, and Maryland's highest court would likely rule that way.

The Baltimore Sun reportsGansler  "Sen. Richard S. Madaleno Jr., a Democrat, asked in May asked if such marriages could be recognized. 'The answer to that question is clearly 'yes,'' Gansler wrote in a 40-page document.

The opinion does not enable same-sex couples to wed here. It also does not carry the weight of law, but is meant to guide judges and state agencies.

'What we say in this opinion is a prediction, not a prescription' as to how a court would interpret the law, Gansler wrote."

The Washington Post adds: "The policy implications of the opinion are not immediately clear, and Gansler says in a one-page summary that his conclusion 'is not free from doubt.'

Gansler's opinion concludes 'that the Court of Appeals, when it ultimately rules on this question in a particular case, will likely apply the principle that a marriage that is valid in the place of celebration is valid in Maryland. The opinion reaches this conclusion in light of the evolving state policy, reflected in anti-discrimination laws, domestic partner laws and other legislation, that respects and supports committed intimate same-sex relationships.'"

Read the full opinion HERE (PDF).

Earlier this month, Maryland's House Judiciary Committee killed a bill (12-8) that would have prohibited the state from recognizing same-sex marriages performed elsewhere.

Posted February 24, 2010 at 11:23am ETC by Andy Towle
in gay marriage, Maryland, News