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Thu Oct 17, 2013, 05:15 PM

Oregon To Recognize Marriages of Gay Couples Wed Out of State

...as reported yesterday in The Willamette Week, Oregon To Recognize Marriages of Gay Couples Wed Out of State:

In a memo sent to all state agencies today, state Chief Operating Officer Michael Jordan says any gay couple who wed in a state where same-sex marriage is legal will now be eligible for the same benefits as any other married couple.

"Oregon agencies must recognize all out-of-state marriages for the purposes of administering state programs," Jordan writes. "That includes legal, same sex marriages performed in other states and countries."

Jordan made the decision based on a legal opinion from the Oregon Department of Justice.

"The opinion says that for years, Oregon has had a history of recognizing valid marriages that were performed in other states," says Department of Administrative Services spokesman Matt Shelby tells WW.


Changing Oregon's practices to recognize the union between couples of the same gender brings the state in line with the federal government, which began recognizing gay marriages last year when the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Defense of Marriage Act.

In other news on the Oregon marriage equality front, from the WW on October 15th, Gay Couples File Federal Suit To Overturn Oregon Ban on Same-Sex Marriage (Lawsuit is separate from 2014 campaign to end Measure 36):

Opponents of Oregon's constitutional ban on same-sex marriage have filed a lawsuit in federal court today, asking a judge to overturn it.

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Eugene by Portland attorneys Lake Perriguey and Lea Ann Easton on behalf of two gay couples, seeks to have 2004's Measure 36 ruled unconstitutional. It names Gov. John Kitzhaber and Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum, as well as a few other officials, as defendants.


The suit is separate from the anticipated $12 million campaign to overturn Measure 36 being orchestrated by Oregon United for Marriage. Volunteers are collecting signatures to put an initiative on the ballot next year.

Measure 36 was challenged in state courts; the Oregon Supreme Court denied an appeal to hear the case in 2009. Perriguey says that Measure 36 is a federal question because it violates the U.S. Constitution.

"We would like a federal district judge in Oregon to find that there is no rational, legitimate or compelling governmental interest that would allow Oregon's anti-gay constitutional amendment to stand," Perriguey says. "It will not withstand constitutional scrutiny."

And progress on the 2014 ballot measure to overturn Measure 36 is good: 100,109 signatures on the petitions, only 16,175 more signatures needed to get on the ballot. If you haven't signed, now is the time.

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Reply Oregon To Recognize Marriages of Gay Couples Wed Out of State (Original post)
DreamGypsy Oct 2013 OP
Tyo Oct 2013 #1
DreamGypsy Oct 2013 #2

Response to DreamGypsy (Original post)

Sat Oct 19, 2013, 01:52 AM

1. Just Married

My partner and I live in Oregon and got married in Vancouver, WA about a week ago. It made sense after the Feds decided to recognize legally sanctioned same-sex marriages for tax, benefits, and inheritance purposes.

The Oregon decision is the icing on the wedding cake as far as we are concerned. After 30 years of being married in our own eyes and in the eyes of our friends and family it's nice to finally have the government recognize us and make it easier for us to care for and provide for each other going forward.

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Response to Tyo (Reply #1)

Sat Oct 19, 2013, 10:51 AM

2. Everybody deserves icing on their wedding cake.

Congratulations Tyo!

I found out about the Oregon decision from a friend who lives in the same building in Portland. He sent out an email with a wide distribution and commented:

Now, we need to get the rest of Oregon legal and have a grand party.

Bob & Don have been a couple for a loonnggg time.

It's wonderful to hear about the impact this will have on real peoples' lives.

Now we just have to make certain that Measure 36 is overturned.

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