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(NY Highest) Court Upholds Recognition of Gay Marriages in Narrow Ruling

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GodlessBiker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-19-09 10:22 AM
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(NY Highest) Court Upholds Recognition of Gay Marriages in Narrow Ruling
Edited on Thu Nov-19-09 10:29 AM by GodlessBiker
The states highest court rejected a challenge by opponents of same-sex marriage to policies that recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states, though the decision gives gay advocates a small victory because it applies to a relatively limited number of people.

In their majority ruling, four of the seven members of the court said they were making their decision on narrow grounds involving the specifics of each case, and not settling the broader question of whether same-sex marriages performed in other states should be recognized. Judge Eugene F. Pigott, Jr., writing for the majority, expressed hope that the Legislature will address this controversy.

But Judge Carmen Beauchamp Ciparick, writing for the three-member minority, said that the orders under review should be affirmed on the ground that same-sex marriages, valid where performed, are entitled to full legal recognition in New York under our states longstanding marriage recognition rule.

The ruling leaves open the possibility there could be future challenges on the issue in New York.

One of the cases involved the State Department of Civil Service, which in 2007 extended health insurance benefits to the partners of state and local workers who were married out of state.

Another case involves a similar policy in Westchester County. In 2006, the county executive, Andrew J. Spano, ordered county officials to recognize same-sex unions performed elsewhere.


Our new Chief Judge and two associate judges pushed to rule favorably on the wider ground of recognizing same-sex marriages performed elsewhere, but the four other justice wimped out and affirmed on very narrow and purely technical grounds, without reaching the wider issue. Meanwhile, those of us in NY who were married elsewhere are left hanging in the balance.
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