Gay Marriage | News | Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania Mayor Defies State's Ban, Marries Gay Couple: VIDEO


Following the lead taken by Montgomery County Clerk Bruce Hanes nearly two weeks ago, the mayor of Braddock, Pennsylvania, performed Allegheny County's first same-sex marriage last night, KDKA reports:

John Kandray and Bill Gray of Regent Square have been together for 11 years. They share a house, two dogs and what they say is a deep love for each other.

“Showing our commitment to each other,” Gray said, “which we’ve been at that point for a long time, just now we can prove it.”

When they heard that Montgomery County was issuing licenses to same-sex couples, they went across the state to get one. And then they heard Braddock Mayor John Fetterman was willing to marry them.

“I just think it’s time people in Pennsylvania say, Mr. Corbett, you know, tear down this law,” Fetterman said. “DOMA is a fundamentally unjust piece of legislation.”

What will happen in the state in terms of recognition any time in the near future remains to be seen. More than 60 marriage licenses have been issued by Montgomery County so far, and it says it is not planning on stopping. The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court has not yet responded to a petition from Governor Tom Corbett to stop the marriages.


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  1. Great Story. Proud and happy for the new couple. That Mayor is a big, big man in more ways than one and obviously a supporter of our cause.
    Damn sure would like to meet Braddock Mayor John Fetterman and thank him. He is my kinda man. Very impressed with his style and look.

    Posted by: Max | Aug 6, 2013 10:18:03 AM

  2. Nice story and all and the mayor is surely a courageous and principled man.

    But the way KDKA reports the story! Maybe it is me and I am "bias-sensitive", but when setting up who the couple is, the KDKA states:

    ".....and what they say is a deep love for each other."

    Now, why couldn't it be reported thus: "John Kandray and Bill Gray of Regent Square have been together for 11 years. They share a house, two dogs and a deep love for each other."

    The whole reporting cast a dubiousness on the reasons why the couple is marrying, principally that they love each other. It should not be reported as a "so they say" type of comment.

    Posted by: jamal49 | Aug 6, 2013 10:32:21 AM

  3. "Just Do It" would be a good slogan for marriage equality in Pennsylvania (if it's not already taken).

    Posted by: JonnyNYNY2FLFL | Aug 6, 2013 10:39:15 AM

  4. Good for you Mayor Fetterman. Send emails to show your support:

    Posted by: NotSafeForWork | Aug 6, 2013 10:59:37 AM

  5. I love these moves! Here in AZ The tiny artsy-fartsy town of Bisbee decided to do civil unions, and now Tempe is considering the same. In PA, the counties outside Pittsburgh and Philly are saying Eff Ewe to the state, the AG says "Meh" and the Gov (Corbett) is MIA. Heh.

    Posted by: JakeAZ | Aug 6, 2013 11:37:10 AM

  6. @jamal49

    I wouldn't read too much into that comment... the reporter is gay himself.

    Posted by: marco | Aug 6, 2013 11:47:47 AM

  7. I think this is awesome, seeing city officials now in two Pennsylvania counties and the state's AG standing against inequality. But what's going to happen with these couples issued marriage licences? Basically, these licences amount to symbolic gestures. They're not actually recognized marriages under Pennsylvania state law. Whether they're ruled void or not, Pennsylvania state law does not recognize any of these marriages as marriages.

    I know these couples understand the situation but it would be awful to see these marriages voided and take away these special moments for these 60+ couples who have received licences.

    Posted by: Francis #1 | Aug 6, 2013 12:13:11 PM

  8. I've actually heard Mayor John Fetterman speak before (about AmeriCorps at The White House) ... Good guy!

    Posted by: reality | Aug 6, 2013 4:34:45 PM

  9. The mayor likes to watch.

    Posted by: Jones | Aug 7, 2013 4:38:38 PM

  10. Sorry, but you can't defy the law because you think "it's time" for the law to change. This is why we have the political process. I know that acts of defiance like this are satisfying emotionally to people, nut this isn't the way to go. It would be sad to see the good will that is building up toward gays be squandered due to this type of activity. Like it or not, the majority is still working it's way out of homophobia and is likely to view law-breaking in a negative light.

    Posted by: Mary | Aug 7, 2013 4:53:58 PM

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