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Same-Sex Couple Seeking Divorce In Nebraska Could Change State's Marriage Laws - VIDEO

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A gay couple married in Iowa and now seeking a divorce in Nebraska will have their case decided by the state Supreme Court.

Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning doesn’t think the state should grant the couple a divorce, seeing as Nebraska doesn’t legally recognize same-sex marriages from anywhere. In 2000, 70 percent of Nebraska voters approved a state constitutional amendment recognizing marriage as only between a man and a woman.

And though the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2013 ruling against section three of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) made it so that the federal government must recognize all couples wed in marriage equality states, section two of DOMA still stands — it grants states the right to ignore the marriage laws of any other state, something Nebraska is clearly doing in this case.

According to the couple’s lawyer, “Nebraska must recognize the legally binding contract, which is the Iowa marriage license, and grant a divorce.”

Though a similar case compelled an Ohio Supreme Court justice to rule that his state must recognize out-of-state gay marriages, Nebraska’s court may choose differently.

See news video of the case AFTER THE JUMP...

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Comments

  1. at no point in that news piece did they mention the constitutional question. a legal contract valid in one state must be recognized in any other state. 14th amendment.

    Posted by: bandanajack | May 30, 2014 6:02:21 PM


  2. "the U.S. Supreme Court's 2013 ruling against section three of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) made it so that the federal government must recognize all couples wed in marriage equality states"

    Not quite. It made it so that the federal government must recognize all couples considered married by the state in which they live and (if different) the forum state in question.

    In other words, the federal government may not refuse to recognize a marriage that it would otherwise recognize for the sole reason that the couple are of the same sex, but may refuse to recognize it based on the fact that the couple's state of residence, or (if different) the forum state in question, doesn't (even if the reason for that is that the couple are of the same sex).

    A federal court or government agency in Nebraska is not required to treat a couple as married just because they have an Iowa marriage certificate, and if the couple lives in Nebraska, then no federal court or government agency anywhere is required to treat them as married.

    "a legal contract valid in one state must be recognized in any other state. 14th amendment."

    I think you have your constitutional provisions mixed up. You might be thinking of the Full Faith and Credit clause in Article IV, but that clause doesn't force Nebraska to recognize a couple married in Iowa as married in Nebraska ... at most it means Nebraska must recognize them as married in Iowa. But even then, the FF&C clause allows Congress to determine "the effect thereof", and Congress by passing DOMA Section 2 has declared that no effect shall be required.

    Posted by: TKinSC | May 31, 2014 12:35:24 AM


  3. "Though a similar case compelled an Ohio Supreme Court justice to rule that his state must recognize out-of-state gay marriages..." I believe you're thinking of Judge Timothy Black from the Southern District of Ohio--a federal court. I'm not aware that the Ohio Supreme Court (a state court) has weighed in on this particular issue.

    Posted by: P | May 31, 2014 9:51:02 AM


  4. And DOMA's section 2 has nothing to go with this. It's a provision that everyone has recognized as empty since in it Congress asserted a right some states already May or may not have. It's state law vs the US Constitution.

    Good to see towleroad is advertising for writers. Maybe we'll see less of this amateur pseudo-expertise..

    Posted by: Bill | May 31, 2014 4:10:32 PM


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