At a press conference on Friday,
Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne said that his office would not
pursue an appeal in two rulings that struck down the state's ban on
U.S. District Judge John Sedwick on
Friday ordered the state to immediately begin issuing marriage
licenses to gay and lesbian couples.
judge strikes down Arizona's gay marriage ban.)
Arizona is one of the three states
affected by two rulings out of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in
San Francisco striking down bans in Nevada and Idaho. The rulings
created a precedent in the circuit that lower courts must follow.
Horne said on Friday that an appeal
would be “futile” and that the state would abide by the court's
Horne instructed clerks to immediately
begin issuing such licenses.
“Effective immediately, the clerks of
Arizona county superior courts cannot deny a marriage license to any
otherwise eligible licensees on the grounds that the license permits
a marriage between persons of the same sex,” Horne said in a letter
Brewer, a Republican, also released a
statement in which she claimed that the federal courts had “thwarted
the will of the people and further eroded the authority of states to
regulate and uphold our laws.”
“Simply put, courts should not be in
the business of making and changing laws based on their personal
agendas. It is not the role of the judiciary to determine that
same-sex marriages should be allowed. Historically and
traditionally, that power belongs to the states, and to the people.
If society wants to recognize same-sex marriage or civil unions, that
decision should be made through our elected representatives or at the
ballot – not the courts,” she said.