In a move that will have the Christofascists and gay haters going berserk, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett (pictured above) has announced that he will not appeal yesterday's federal court ruling striking down that state's same sex marriage bans. Previously, Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane had refused to defend the ban which she believed to be unconstitutional. As a result, the ruling will become final and same sex marriages will be allowed to continue and Pennsylvania will recognize same sex marriages legally performed in other marriage equality states (which means at the husband's family reunion in the late summer , we will be married under Pennsylvania law). The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has details:
HARRISBURG — Gov. Tom Corbett’s administration won’t appeal a federal judge’s decision yesterday ruling a state law prohibiting same sex marriage unconstitutional, Mr. Corbett’s administration said this afternoon.
“I have thoroughly reviewed Judge Jones’ opinion in the Whitewood case. Given the high legal threshold set forth by Judge Jones in this case, the case is extremely unlikely to succeed on appeal. Therefore, after review of the opinion and on the advice of my Commonwealth legal team, I have decided not to appeal Judge Jones’ decision,” said a statement from Mr. Corbett’s office.
Same-sex couples have already begun applying for marriage licenses across the state and one same-sex couple was wed this afternoon in Allegheny County.
“As a Roman Catholic, the traditional teaching of my faith has not wavered. I continue to maintain the belief that marriage is between one man and one woman. My duties as Governor require that I follow the laws as interpreted by the Courts and make a judgment as to the likelihood of a successful appeal,” Mr. Corbett’s statement continued.
“Throughout the debate on this important and meaningful issue, I have maintained that Commonwealth officials and agencies would follow the provisions of Pennsylvania’s marriage law unless or until a court says otherwise. The court has spoken, and I will ensure that my administration follows the provisions of Judge Jones’ order with respect for all parties.
“It is my hope that as the important issue of same-sex relationships continues to be addressed in our society, that all involved be treated with respect.”
Some of the plaintiffs, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Philadelphia firm Hangley Aronchick Segal Pudlin & Schiller, demanded that Pennsylvania recognize gay marriages from other states, while others sought to be married in Pennsylvania.
U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III gave both group of plaintiffs what they wanted. “By virtue of this ruling, same-sex couples who seek to marry in Pennsylvania may do so, and already married same-sex couples will be recognized as such in the commonwealth,” he wrote in Tuesday’s decision.