Missouri, Illinois react to gay marriage ruling - KMOV.com

Missouri, Illinois react to gay marriage ruling

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By The Associated Press

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Some Missouri same-sex couples might have to wait to obtain marriage licenses following Friday's landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision to legalize those unions.

Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon on Friday said he'll take necessary action to implement the ruling throughout the state.

But the court's ruling won't take effect immediately. Justices are giving the losing side about three weeks to ask for reconsideration.

Recorders in the Kansas City and St. Louis areas have been issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples since federal and state-level rulings overturned Missouri's ban on the practice.

But recorders in other counties were hesitant and said those rulings didn't apply statewide.

Recorders on Friday appeared to be taking a similarly cautious approach as the U.S. Supreme Court ruling was reviewed.

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A Springfield couple who married in Iowa three years ago is celebrating Friday's ruling.

Amanda Derham and her wife, Lori, who helped start the Springfield chapter of Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, said they were "beyond words."

"Our 2-year-old son keeps yelling for cake because he knows it's a celebration in this house," Amanda Derham said. "It feels good to know we can be recognized anywhere in the states."

The Springfield News-Leader reports (http://sgfnow.co/1Hkj0Sn ) Bishop James Johnston of the Springfield Catholic Diocese decried the ruling. He said in a statement an essential part of marriage is a physical union that could create new life.

"That is biology, not bigotry," he wrote. "It is also much more, in that it forms the basis for a healthy, stable culture for raising children to become integrated adults and citizens."


The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday ruled that same-sex couples have the right to marry anywhere in the United States. Illinois has allowed gay marriages since last year after state lawmakers approved them in 2013. A look at reactions to the high court's ruling from across Illinois:

"There's a big old happy dance going on in heaven right now." - Patricia Ewert of Chicago, referring to her late wife, Vernita Gray, who died of cancer several months after the couple became the first to marry under Illinois' gay marriage law.

"For the more than 10,000 same-sex couples married in Illinois, our marriages must now be recognized by every jurisdiction in the U.S. and accorded the same legal rights and protections." - Bernard Cherkasov, CEO of Equality Illinois.

"This misfortune now attempts on a national basis what the state of Illinois sought to do in 2013 in attempting to redefine marriage to include same-sex couples. It was an 'attempt' because the state has no moral authority to change what God has created." - Springfield Roman Catholic Bishop Thomas Paprocki.

"As Americans, we believe in human rights, civil rights and dignity. Today's ruling recognizes that our gay friends, family members, and neighbors are deserving of the same right to commit to the one they love." - U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois.

"Finally the laws have caught up with the vast majority of individuals that believe that same-sex couples can and do lead committed and loving lives together, and thus deserve the same legal protections and responsibilities as any other married couples." - Anthony Martinez, executive director of the Illinois LGBT civil rights advocacy organization The Civil Rights Agenda.

"As we celebrate the fact that all Americans now have equal access to marriage, we must not forget that much work remains to be done to ensure that no one can be denied employment, housing, public accommodation, or federal benefits because of their sexual orientation or gender identity." U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley of Chicago.

"All my brothers and sisters can go ahead and marry and choose the people they love. It truly is the land of the free." Celebrity chef Art Smith, owner of Chicago restaurant Table 52.

"By ruling that every American has a right to marry whomever they love regardless of where they live, today marks one of the great civil rights victories of our time. It is a victory for America's true values of treating everyone equally under the law." - Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel

"Justice delayed is justice denied. For too long, same-sex couples in this country have had to wait: for state legislatures to pass marriage equality; for judges to declare that withholding this right was unconstitutional; and for voters to turn back anti-equality initiatives, just so they could marry the person they love." - Cook County Clerk David Orr.

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