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Boulder's same-sex marriage licenses invalid? Inside court ruling, John Suthers's objections

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Wendy and Michelle Alfredsen check out their marriage certificate in a 7News image. Additional photos and more below.
Yesterday, the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver ruled that same sex couples have a right to marry under the Constitution -- and even though that judgment was stayed owing to the metaphysical certainty of an appeal, Boulder immediately began issuing marriage licenses based on the decision. The first to take advantage of this opportunity were Wendy and Michelle Alfredsen, who are among nine couples suing in Adams County court on the same subject.

Colorado Attorney General John Suthers, who is defending the state in the Adams County complaint, immediately declared the Boulder licenses invalid. Continue for explanations about his reasoning and the latest developments, including four documents, a video and comments from Kris McDaniel-Miccio, one of the Alfredsens' fellow plaintiffs.

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A collage from "A Timeline of Boulder LGBT History," on view below, shows Richard Adams's marriage certificate and Boulder County Clerk Clela Rorex, among others, circa 1975.
Boulder has been at the forefront of progressive thought regarding same-sex marriage for decades. In 1975, as graphically depicted in "A Timeline of Boulder LGBT History," on view below, then-Boulder County Clela Rorex began issuing same-sex marriage licenses -- and one of them, involving Richard Adams and his beloved, Anthony Corbett Sullivan, became the basis of Adams v. Howerton, the first lawsuit in which plaintiffs challenged the federal government to recognize same-sex marriages.

The 1982 ruling, detailed in a document below, turned in part on Sullivan's status as an alien; he was a citizen of Australia. Nonetheless, the court dismissed the argument that the U.S. Constitution included a right for same-sex couples to wed in part because "[t]he legal protection and special status afforded to marriage (being defined as an union of persons of different sex) has historically...been rationalized as being for the purpose of encouraging the propagation of the race."

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John Suthers.
Attorney General Suthers included procreation in his defense of Colorado's same-sex marriage ban in Adams County court earlier this month -- and when Boulder again began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples yesterday, he issued a statement that rejected the rationale of Clerk Hillary Hall.

Kitchen v. Herbert, the case before the 10th Circuit, is rooted in Utah -- but because 10th Circuit decisions are binding in Colorado and several other states, Hall believes the precedent is applicable to the same-sex marriage ban here, a County of Boulder release points out. "Couples across Colorado have been waiting a long time to have their right to marry the person they love recognized," she's quoted as saying. "I want to act immediately to let them carry out that wish."

In response to Hall's move, Suthers wrote, "Colorado's constitutional prohibition on same-sex marriages remains in effect. Today's decision by the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals was stayed by the Court and has not gone into effect even in Utah, let alone in Colorado. Any marriage licenses issued to same-sex couples in Colorado before a final court resolution of the issue are invalid."

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Boulder County Clerk Hillary Hall speaking to 7News.
The AG's office also added a quote from J.D. MacFarlane, one of Suthers's predecessor as attorney general. When Boulder began issuing same-sex marriage licenses in 1975, MacFarlane said that "the issuance of a license under such circumstances is useless and an official act of no validity and may mislead the recipients of the license and the general public."

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Kris McDaniel-Miccio.
Aforementioned Colorado plaintiff McDaniel-Miccio, a DU law professor, strikes a very different tone in her comments about the 10th Circuit ruling. Corresponding via e-mail from Ireland, where she's currently serving as a visiting professor at the University of Dublin, she writes:
"Although the 10th Circuit Court stayed its decision, this is a day when ALL Americans should be proud. Proud of a Court that found marriage to be a fundamental right regardless of gender; proud that our families and children will receive the same protection as straight families, and willing to reject the tired, unproductive, illogical and ridiculous claim that marriage is for the sole purpose of procreation. My hope and I suspect the hope of gay folks in Colorado is that the court in our case will follow suit and that the AG and Governor will not defend a losing and indefensible discriminatory constitutional amendment and state statute. Fundamental rights are just that...fundamental...and not dependent on a show of hands."
One more thing: Boulder intends to begin issuing more same-sex marriage licenses beginning at 8:30 a.m. this morning.

Continue for a 7News report about Boulder's response to the 10th Circuit case, the Boulder LGBT history timeline, the original Kitchen v. Herbert complaint, the court's ruling and excerpts from Adams v. Howerton.



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36 comments
Jay Cismaru
Jay Cismaru

Nathan I call the intellectual retard is on the majority of married couples produce future taxpayers real simple. Frank it is a minority that you represent the majority of people voted it is his job to support with the people voted for you sir are in the minority

Steve At Work
Steve At Work

Like him or not, and I'm not a fan, he is well connected to the most influential people in this state. He's been in state government for a long time. He ain't going to prison. That's not how it works in Colorado.

Nathan Embree
Nathan Embree

So, then if a straight couple can't produce children, they should either not be allowed to marry, or pay a fine for failing to produce future taxpayers??

Frank Hickenlooperwooper Sturgell
Frank Hickenlooperwooper Sturgell

Why does he interfere with commerce when his duties are legally to prevent interference with commerce? Why does his goon sit in DORA meetings and give the architects board the OK to literally break the law? btw. He can stop fighting any time he is told to by GUV or chooses to do so himself. He's only appeasing morons at this point and his own personal opinion.. The law has been struck down. It will be great to see him disbarred and in prison.

R Carter Arnest
R Carter Arnest

Anyone who spends time beating a dead horse is wasting time

Douglas Evans
Douglas Evans

I just hope the government give people permissions to love each other "legally" one day Or we have a goddamn revolution and people just stop asking the criminal corrupt fucking government for permission.....One day

Jay Cismaru
Jay Cismaru

I am against gay marriage I am NOT against gay people or civil unions there should be a difference between people produce future taxpayers and those that don't marriage usually produces future taxpayers

Jay Cismaru
Jay Cismaru

Just so you understand John Suthers is fighting for the will of the people

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Suthers has his head up his ass -- even if the Licenses are issued in error, they have the full effect and authority of any other license issued by the clerk and recorder under the legal doctrine of Res Judicata.


Repuglykkkan Suthers is once again on the wrong side of history, ethics and law.



Christine Shock
Christine Shock

Suthers is wasting time and resources fighting this...43 is unconstitutional, and should have been overturned long ago...Call Hickenloopers' office and tell him that LOVE RULES in Colorado and that Suthers needs to stand down

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

You all be sure to vote for Suthers' protege, Cynthia Coffman -- if Suthers' elections are any indication, she likely will be the State's next Attorney General.

Matthew Munn
Matthew Munn

Pret' much. "We want less gubmint! Wait, you want personal freedoms?!? More gubmint please!"

Rhonda Diltz
Rhonda Diltz

We leave the meddling to the 'Small Govt' Tea Billy activists these days....

Matthew Munn
Matthew Munn

...ahead, yes, to when people can do as they please and not worry about government meddling in their private lives.

Mark J Pastika
Mark J Pastika

It's 2014 and Reagan is dead. Please set your clock forward a few decades!!!!!

Mark J Pastika
Mark J Pastika

You look like you are all cracked up. Put down THE PIPE!! Douchebag.

Nicole GuBrath
Nicole GuBrath

It always cracks me up when people post multiple times and then claim to not care. :)

Candie Bernard
Candie Bernard

The churches aren't force to marry anyone. Fortunately, you can have your best friend officiate a wedding ceremony in Colorado :).

Matthew Munn
Matthew Munn

Considering every ban is getting struck down by higher courts, yes. Surely there are more important issues to address.

Mark J Pastika
Mark J Pastika

They didactic too soon. You can marry a rock for all I care. Just don't force the church to marry you. If you do, start with the Muslims...;)

Steve At Work
Steve At Work

The Attorney General can not stop fighting same-sex marriage. Doing so is his responsibility as the AG. His personal views have no bearing.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

... so you would deny infertile couples, or those women past menopause, the right to marry.


Noted.


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase ... will your blind hate and contempt for Gov. Chickenchoker cause you to encourage people to vote for Rethuglycan Bob BowPray ?


Do you think his policy toward recreational drugs will be more liberal?




DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

... sounds like a Nuremberg excuse.


Fail.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

You are channeling John Suthers.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  That was facetious, of course -- I would prefer that everyone leave the Fascist (Republican) Party at once; that way, there would be no question about any votes being cast for a candidate of it.  Of course, the same thing should happen with regard to the Collaborationist (Democratic) Party.  After we effect the dissolution of the two political organizations that criminalized American society, we should institute a parliamentary system.

Assuming, for the sake of argument that the electorate will again return like a dog to its vomit  to support these anti-American political parties and that your worst fears about Hack's incapacity are borne out, would Beauprez (with regard to cannabis) be worse than Hack?  Hack & Co. have done what they could to shore up Prohibition, and it's hard to see how the Fascists could better their record of subversion.  Were Beauprez to go beyond Hack's (due to media incompetence and collusion, almost invisible) opposition to cannabis, the issue would return to prominence -- as the prime example of overbearing government, abuse of the Law, and defiance of the citizen-initiated constitutional amendments which its ongoing criminalization is!  I would welcome the re-politicization of the issue a squabble between branches controlled by the two fascist parties might bring (to the richly-deserved and long overdue discredit of both).  I urge all voters to leave the two criminal political parties at once:  https://www.sos.state.co.us/voter-classic/secuRegVoterIntro.do .

There will be other choices on the upcoming ballot and if more of Colorado's voters join what is already the largest group of voters in the State -- independents -- there should be more in years to come.  Colorado can sound the death knell for American fascism by declaring its independence from party (George Washington would approve this message).  It is infinitely preferable not to vote than to vote for parties ultimately destructive of American Liberty and society, and the lack of choice should impel more to run for office.  Vote for no Democrats or Republicans!

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@RobertChase ... so you dream of Anarchy in the hope that an independent Phoenix will rise from the ashes?


How's that working out in Iraq and Afghanistan?

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay  Do you fear blood in the streets if a Fascist replaces Hack?  I am sure that a Fascist administration would do what it could to keep as much murder and abuse confined to our bloated prison system as possible.  Where is Evan Ebel's list?

GuestWho
GuestWho topcommenter

@RobertChase  If you think you can do a better job try running for a political position...seriously. Best of luck.

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

@RobertChase


How in fuck do you expect anyone to take you seriously?  Why don't you supply the listening audience with an operational definition of "facist" in your deluded opinion.  Jazus!  Fucking dumb-ass socialist.  


You bandy about your half-witted opinions, which have zero basis in reality.  

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@fishingblues "Facist" is what illiterates like you write in place of "fascist".  Here are two applicable definitions of fascism; try to pay attention so you won't keep making such an ass of yourself when the subject comes up again:


"Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power." -- Benito Mussolini

(that definition fits the U.S. like a glove)


fascism (Oxford Dictionaries Online)

NOUN 1  An authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization.


The country that imprisons more people than any other has an authoritarian, right-wing system of government and socail organization.  Nationalistic, right-wing government is why the U.S. is constantly waging undeclared wars.

fishingblues
fishingblues topcommenter

@RobertChase


What a freaking dumb ass.  Let's all take to heart and believe as valid everything Mussolini says.  Fuck!


Next up in the putrefied mind of the socialist, a general non-specific statement

from a dictionary in which the twisted socialist fills in his own interpretation.


Damn, how convincing.


(Notice that, unlike you, I wasn't petty enough to point out your typo.  However, a socialist that can't spell social {socail?} should be a concern.)

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