In a legal brief filed Monday defending his decision to issue
marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples in defiance of
Pennsylvania law, D. Bruce Hanes, register of wills for Montgomery
County, called the marriage ban “arbitrary and suspect.”
Hanes' office has issued roughly 135 marriage licenses to gay
couples in the last month. More than a third of the couples have
John Fetterman performs first gay wedding in Allegheny County,
According to the AP, Hanes, a Democrat, cites in his filing the
recent Supreme Court ruling that struck down Section 3 of the Defense
of Marriage Act (DOMA), which prohibited federal agencies from
recognizing the legal marriages of gay and lesbian couples.
In the brief, filed by the Montgomery County Solicitor's Office,
Hanes said: “Pennsylvania's DOMA statute is arbitrary and suspect,
and is very similar to the statute which was struck down [by the
The administration of Republican Governor Tom Corbett sued Hanes
to stop him from issuing additional licenses to same-sex couples.
Hanes announced he would begin issuing the licenses soon after
Attorney General Kathleen Kane, a Democrat, refused to defend the law
in a separate legal challenge.
Daryl Metcalfe: Impeach officials who issue gay marriage licenses.)