The Pennsylvania county clerk ordered last week by a judge to stop
issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples said Tuesday
that he'll appeal the ruling.
Montgomery County Register of Wills Bruce Hanes had issued 174
marriage licenses to gay couples since July before he was ordered to
cease. A 1996 Pennsylvania law limits marriage to heterosexual
Republican Governor Tom Corbett sued to block Hanes from issuing
Commonwealth Court Judge Dan Pellegrini said in his order that
Hanes did not have the authority to decide the issue on his own, the
to Reuters, Hanes will file his appeal in the next several days.
Pennsylvania General Counsel James Schultz expressed confidence
that the state would win the following round as well.
“The law is clear, as was the court's ruling in this case: Local
officials do not have the power or authority to disregard state laws
based on their own personal legal opinions,” Nils
Hagen-Frederiksen, a spokesman for Schultz, is quoted as saying by
Hanes acted after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a portion of
the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and Pennsylvania Attorney General
Kathleen Kane said in a statement that her office could not defend
the marriage law in a separate case because the law was