AUSTIN, Tex. (CBS/AP) – Despite Texas’ statewide ban on gay marriage, county officials in Austin married a same-sex couple on Thursday under a one-time court order issued for medical reasons.
Travis County spokeswoman Ginny Ballard said the marriage occurred Thursday, though it wasn’t immediately clear if the license has legal standing. The marriage followed a state District Court order instructing that officials not rely on Texas’ unconstitutional prohibitions on same-sex marriage.READ MORE: As COVID Delta Variant Infections Subside Experts Warn of Winter Surge
Texas’ decade-old, voter-approved ban on gay marriage was declared unconstitutional in federal court last year, but the judge stayed the ruling to allow the state to appeal.
The license was issued exclusively for Sarah Goodfriend and Suzanne Bryant. County Clerk Dana Debeauvoir said one of the women, who live in Austin, “has severe and immediate health concerns.” The couple was married in a ceremony presided over by a rabbi immediately after a marriage license was issued.READ MORE: Concord Restaurant, Bar Patrons Divided Over Vaccine Mandate
Debeauvoir released a statement saying she issued a marriage licensed based on an order from District Judge David Wahlberg directing that she immediately “cease and desist relying on the unconstitutional Texasprohibitions against same-sex marriage as a basis for not issuing a marriage.”
Debeauvoir said “any additional licenses issued to same sex couples also must be court ordered.”MORE NEWS: Newsom Signs Law to Replace Fr. Serra Statue With Memorial to Indigenous Californians
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