Monday, September 16, 2013
As I have previously discussed, the Pennsylvania Health Department under Republican Governor Tom Corbett sued the Montgomery County Register of Wills D. Bruce Hanes to stop him from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Despite Pennsylvania’s law defining marriage as between a man and woman, Hanes issued 164 marriage licenses of which 98 were completed and filed.
Commonwealth Court Judge Dan Pellegrini ordered Hanes to stop issuing licenses, stating it is up to the General Assembly or Pennsylvania courts to determine whether the law should not be obeyed or enforced.
A challenge to Pennsylvania’s same-sex marriage ban is now pending in federal court; however, it is not immediately clear what will happen to the couples who have already received licenses.
See Associated Press, Pa. Judge Orders End to Same-Sex Marriage Licenses, The Times-Tribune, Sept. 12, 2013.