Colorado Hub




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

Continue reading "Coloradans Face Off in Gay Marriage Battle: VIDEO" »


Fight Over Same-Sex Marriage Continues in Boulder, Colorado: READ

Colorado’s attorney general John Suthers is in a continued legal standoff with Boulder County officials on the issue of same-sex marriage. Hillary hall Boulder Colorado clerk

The Boulder County clerk Hillary Hall has been issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples since June 25. This comes after last week's ruling from the 10th Circuit of U.S. Appeals striking down Utah's ban on same-sex marriage. Hall's office made the decision to enforce the Court of Appeals' ruling after they interpreted that issuing the licenses was now legal. 

In a June 27 letter to Hall from the State of Colorado Department of Law, Colorado Solicitor General Dan Domenico, on behalf of Suthers, wrote:

“It is clear that your offices and ours have a difference of opinion regarding your authority to issue marriage licenses that do not comply with existing Colorado law...You alone are issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, and many of these couples have declared that they believe their licenses to be legal and valid...The State’s position is that those licenses cannot be recognized and are invalid and of no legal effect.”

The letter proposed that Hall agree to cease issuing marriage licenses to gay couples in exchange for a joint petition to the Colorado Supreme Court “seeking expeditious resolution of the question of [Hall’s] authority to issue licenses to same-sex couples.”

Yesterday, the attorney general’s office responded to county officials’ request for additional time to consider the proposal. According to Buzzfeed, Domenico wrote that officials could have until July 10 to respond to the proposal only if Hall stopped issuing marriage licenses.

In a statement to Buzzfeed, Domenico said:

“If she elects to continue after [July 1], I am afraid we will be forced to take legal action.”  

Hall refused that proposal, arguing that the response denied her request for additional time:

“Shortly after 11:00, we received a response from the Attorney General. Our request was essentially denied as the terms for more time were contingent on stopping the issuance of same-sex licenses. Our position is the same as previously stated. Same-sex licenses are legal and just licenses and we will continue to issue them.”

Suthers’ office has since told county officials that they plan to go to court today.

Read Domenico's letter to Hall, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Fight Over Same-Sex Marriage Continues in Boulder, Colorado: READ" »


Six Same-Sex Couples File Lawsuit Challenging Colorado's Gay Marriage Ban - VIDEO

Hillary hall same-sex marriage licenses

Yesterday, six Colorado couples filed a federal lawsuit challenging the state’s ban on same-sex marriage.

The state voted to ban same-sex marriage in 2006.

The lawsuit, which states that Colorado "unlawfully denies the issuance of marriage licenses, and refuses to recognize the marriages of certain couples, based solely on the sex of the persons in the marriage union," comes during an ongoing battle in the state on the issue of gay marriage.

The plaintiffs are Catherine Burns, Sheila Schroeder, Mark Thrun, Geoffrey Bateman, Rachel Catt, Cassie Rubald, Breanna Alexander, Stacy Parrish, Angela Cranmore, Julianne Deloy, Karen Collier, and Denise Lord.

According to ABC 7 News Denver, the lawsuit, which names Governor John Hickenlooper, Colorado Attorney General John Suthers, and two county clerks as defendants, follows the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal's decision to strike down Utah’s ban on same-sex marriage.

Following this decision, on June 25, Boulder County clerk Hillary Hall decided to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Speaking to The Denver Post, Catherine Burns said that "most families in Colorado do not want this discriminatory law on the books."

The Court of Appeal ruling states that the Fourteenth Amendment “protects the fundamental right to marry, establish a family, raise children, and enjoy the full protection of a state’s marital laws. A state may not deny the issuance of a marriage license to two persons, or refuse to recognize their marriage, based solely upon the sex of the persons in the marriage union.”

According to Mari Newman, whose firm is representing the six couples:

"From a legal perspective, this case really ought to be a slam dunk and it's not often that lawyers get to say that. But here the 10th Circuit has been absolutely clear."

In June, Judge C. Scott Crabtree presided over two cases which argued that the gay marriage ban violates the U.S. Constitution, according to ABC 7 News Denver.  Crabtree has yet to issue a ruling.

Watch the ABC 7 News Denver report on the new lawsuit, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Six Same-Sex Couples File Lawsuit Challenging Colorado's Gay Marriage Ban - VIDEO" »


Trending



Towleroad - Blogged