Thursday, March 05, 2015

District Court Invalidates Nebraska Bans on Same-Sex Marriages

In Waters v. Ricketts, (D NE, March 2, 2015), a Nebraska federal district court issued a preliminary injunction, effective March 9, prohibiting enforcement of the state's laws that bar same-sex marriage and recognition of same-sex marriages performed elsewhere, saying:
Under existing precedent, Nebraska's same-sex marriage ban is at least deserving of heightened scrutiny because the challenged amendment proceeds "along suspect lines," as either gender-based or gender-stereotype-based discrimination.
The court's order implementing its decision requires state officials:
to treat same-sex couples the same as different sex couples in the context of processing a marriage license or determining the rights, protections, obligations or benefits of marriage.
ACLU issued a statement announcing the decision.  According to AP, Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson plans to ask the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals for an order barring county officials from issuing same-sex marriage licences while the district court opinion is appealed.