May 17, 2004

RI Poised To Fall Into Ocean

...along with Massachusetts.

Says the ProJo: Rhode Island Attorney General Patrick Lynch said today that he sees nothing preventing Rhode Island from recognizing same-sex marriages performed in Massachusetts but suggested that lawmakers and the courts would ultimately decide that question.


Does this officially make us the second state in the union where gays and lesbians can be legally recognized by the state as having the rights and responsibilities (and nomenclature) of civil marriage? I think it does, and hopefully soon we can make it an option for all Rhode Islanders to get married at home.

Steve emails: "Your Biggest Little just recognized same sex marriages performed in MA. I beat you to the blogging!"

Yeah, I got sick of waiting, so I went off to read a book. It took you long enough today, Patrick!

Posted by Bil at May 17, 2004 05:48 PM | TrackBack

Today, CT said no. RI said yes. Where does this go now with states differing on recognition.

Methinks Sandy O'Connor will eventually decide this one.

Posted by: Steve at May 17, 2004 06:06 PM : Link this comment

Yeah, it does seem to hinge on whether or not the DOMAs are constitutional. We live in interesting times.

Posted by: Bil at May 17, 2004 06:09 PM : Link this comment

Lynch did leave himself a bit of an out (which leaves myself and my boyfriend in a bit of a wait and see mode). He basically said anyone who can obtain a marriage license (and marry) in another state whose marrige doesn't violate several specific rules (including the marriage isn't incestual, the 2 people meant to get married [sorry Britney], among a few others), then there is nothing preventing the state of Rhode Island from recognizing those marriages (yet).

However, he did say he has no power over Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney's interpretation of his state's laws. So, if Mitt sticks to not allowing out of state gays to marry (even in the face of what Lynch and the NY AG have stated) and declares out of state marriages void in Massachusetts (even if Provincetown, Worcester, and Somerville continue with them), then Rhode Islanders trying to marry in Mass. would, in effect not be married and there would be nothing for Rhode Island to recognize.

Keep an eye on Smith Hill this week, this may just be starting to get interesting.

Posted by: Cotuit at May 17, 2004 07:34 PM : Link this comment

I don't envy you (or anyone) trying to keep up with all of the legal machinations here. I, too, suspect that, in the end, the Supreme Court will decide this one... A shame. Too many lives will needlessly be in, as you put it, "wait and see mode" while the self described moral guardians of America continue their campaign of hate...


Posted by: Garris at May 18, 2004 12:26 AM : Link this comment

Garris is right, the Supremes will have to decide on this one.

I have to say I'm extremely proud to be from Massachusetts. Remember when Dan Quayle said something about New England being the epicenter of the cultural elite? Well, he was right. I'd rather be a member of the cultural elite than a member of the head-in-the-sand ignoramuses any day.

Posted by: Patti M. at May 18, 2004 11:14 AM : Link this comment

Hey now Patti, Steve mentioned it first. Poor Steve, no respeck.

And if any elitist northern liberals want to revel in our perceived cultural superiority, check out this Kos Diary.

Posted by: Bil at May 18, 2004 06:17 PM : Link this comment
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