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Colorado’s Gay Marriage Ban Expected to Be Overturned Today

A federal judge in Colorado is expected to issue a ruling sometime today striking down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage, the AP reports:

Colorado flagU.S. District Judge Raymond P. Moore indicated that the injunction sought by gay couples declaring Colorado's law unconstitutional is certain to be granted. But he said what he's trying to decide is whether his ruling should be put on hold.

Colorado Republican Attorney General John Suthers is not opposing the injunction, but he wants it to be stayed until the nation's highest court decides the issue. However, the attorney for the gay couples told the judge repeatedly that "justice delayed is justice denied."

"Fundamental rights cannot be stayed," said Mari Newman, one of the attorneys filing suit on behalf of the six couples

Earlier this month, a district judge struck down the state’s ban on gay marriage – leading to some counties to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The Colorado Supreme Court later halted the issuance of marriage licenses but a ruiling by Moore in favor of the plaintiffs, without a stay, would open the door to allowing clerks across the state to continue issuing licenses.  


Denver Baker Appeals Colorado Civil Rights Commission's Finding That He Discriminated Against Gay Couple

Jack phillips baker denver

Denver baker Jack Phillips has appealed an order from the Colorado Civil Rights Commission (CCRC) requiring him to prepare wedding cakes for same-sex couples, reports ABC News.

In May, the CCRC rejected Phillips’ appeal of a judge’s earlier ruling that he “unlawfully discriminated against a gay couple by refusing to sell them a wedding cake” in 2012.

Phillips has said that making the cake would violate the Christian principles by which he runs his business.

Phillips' attorneys say that the decision violates the baker’s First Amendment rights.

Earlier this month we reported that a bakery in Northern Ireland could face legal action from The Equality Commission for Northern Ireland for refusing to take an order for a cake with the slogan “support gay marriage.”

Watch a Fox News report on the Phillips case, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Colorado Supreme Court Halts Gay Marriages in Denver and Adams County

The Colorado Supreme Court halted the issuance of marriage licenses to gay couples in Denver on Friday, though other counties continued on, the Denver Post reports:

SuthersThe order by Colorado's high court follows an emergency request filed Monday by Colorado Attorney General John Suthers (pictured), asking the Supreme Court to order all county clerks to stop issuing gay marriage licenses. The order also imposes a stay preventing the Adams County clerk — which was also named in the case — from issuing such licenses.

The Adams County clerk had not begun issuing the licenses.

Clerks in Boulder and Pueblo, whose clerks are currently issuing same-sex marriage licenses, are not affected by the ruling and said they would continue issuing licenses to gay couples. So far, Boulder has issued 156 marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Here is the ruling.


Colorado AG Appeals to State Supreme Court to Halt Gay Marriages After Circuit Judge Rejects His Request

SuthersAdams County District Court Judge C. Scott Crabtree on Monday rejected Colorado Attorney General John Suthers's request to stop county clerks from issuing marriage licenses to gay couples, prompting Suthers (pictured) to appeal to the state Supreme Court to halt them and issue a ruling on the constitutionality of the state's ban, which Crabtree struck down last week, the Denver Post reports.

Since Crabtree's ruling county clerks in Denver and Pueblo counties have joined the clerk of Boulder in issuing marriage licenses to gay couples. Following Crabtree's ruling striking down the ban, District Court Judge Andrew Hartman ruled that Boulder County could keep on issuing marriage licenses to gay couples.


Denver and Boulder Counties Continue to Issue Gay Marriage Licenses

Colorado's ban on gay marriage was struck down earlier this week, and the ruling immediately stayed.

JohnsonTwo counties, however, have continued to issue marriage licenses, the Denver Post reports:

The Denver County clerk's office on Thursday began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, just hours after a Boulder judge rejected a bid by the state to block a similar move there.

...Clerk and Recorder Debra Johnson's (pictured) decision came after a Boulder County judge said he would allow Boulder's clerk to continue issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, rejecting a request from Attorney General John Suthers to issue an injunction.

Denver issued 17 licenses to same-sex couples Thursday afternoon.

Pueblo County Clerk Gilbert "Bo" Ortiz said he will begin issuing licenses to gay couples on Friday morning, and other county clerks said they were considering their next steps. At least four counties — El Paso, Arapahoe, Jefferson and Weld counties — said they had no plans to follow suit.

Governor John Hickenlooper has urged teh state's attorney general not to appeal the ruling.


Coloradans Face Off in Gay Marriage Battle: VIDEO

Boulder

20140630__01DC_SameSex~1Last Wednesday, Colorado Attorney General John Suthers (pictured) filed a motion in U.S. District Court seeking an injunction against any further litigation seeking to overturn the state's ban on gay marriage while the Tenth Circuit deals with the appeal of their recent ruling holding Utah's gay marriage ban unconstitutional. Suthers move is being seen as a preemptive one seeking to immediately halt marriages if and when Colorado's ban in struck down and prompted by the Boulder County clerk Hillary Hall (below) who has interpreted the Tenth Circuit ruling as justification to begin handing out marriage licenses to gay Coloradans.

The Daily Camera reports:

Attorney Jean Dubofsky, who successfully argued against the constitutionality of Colorado’s anti-gay Amendment 2 in Romer v. Evans, also put the attorney general’s move Wednesday in the context of the pending state marriage cases, in comments to the Daily Camera.

“It’s like he’s seeking some sort of pretrial relief in the federal case in Denver, and trying to forestall a ruling by the Adams County District Court,” Dubofsky said. “If I were the federal district court judge in Denver, I would say, ‘Wait a minute, this case hasn’t even gone anywhere yet. Why am I being asked to stay everything?’”

20140702__03dcamarw~1_200Attorney General Suthers' move seeks to halt an ongoing lawsuit of several same-sex couples from Colorado who are suing State Governor John Hickenlooper for the state's denial of their right to marry.

Hill, like some gay rights groups, is pushing the Governor and Attorney General to consider the families whose legal status is in limbo. Said Hill of her actions in a statement last Thursday:

I believe it is a waste of resources for the Attorney General to keep denying people their constitutional right, but that is his prerogative until there is a Supreme Court case squarely addressing the issue. The question now is what public officials like me should do in the meantime. I think the least harmful and most sensible solution is to issue marriage licenses and avoid the potential of more civil rights violations while this plays out in court. I hope the court will agree with me.

Meanwhile, protesters and counter-protesters are battling at a Boulder intersection. The Daily Camera went and spoke with some of them.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

2_boulder

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