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A federal judge in Utah Friday struck down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage, saying the law violates the U.S. Constitution’s guarantees of equal protection and due process.
"The state’s current laws deny its gay and lesbian citizens their fundamental right to marry and, in so doing, demean the dignity of these same-sex couples for no rational reason," wrote U.S. District Court Judge Robert J. Shelby. "Accordingly, the court finds that these laws are unconstitutional." [...]
"It feels unreal," said Moudi Sbeity, who with his partner Derek L. Kitchen were plaintiffs in the case. "I’m just very thrilled that Derek and I will be able to get married soon, if all goes well and the state doesn’t appeal. We want a farmer’s market wedding because it’s where we spend a lot of time." [...]
The other plaintiffs in the lawsuit are Karen Archer and Kate Call and Laurie Wood and Kody Partridge. Archer and Call already have a marriage license issued in Iowa, but joined the lawsuit to protest that their legal marriage was not recognized in Utah.
The ruling has implications for similarly enacted marriage bans through the country. Utah's voters approved the ban in 2004.