Senators and Representatives Ask US AG to Recognize Michigan Gay Marriages
(Sander Levin Press Release, March 27, 2014)
Senators Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow with Reps. John Dingell, Sander Levin, Gary Peters and Dan Kildee sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, requesting that, for the purpose of federal law and benefits, he recognize the more than 300 same-sex marriages that took place across Michigan last weekend.
Yesterday the Governor indicated that the historic marriages we witnessed this past weekend were legal but refused to recognize them. That makes no sense and we are calling on Attorney General Holder to immediately recognize these marriages for all federal purposes,” said Rep. Sander Levin.
A PDF copy of the letter is here. The text of the letter follows:
Dear Attorney General Holder:
We are writing to request that you formally recognize as lawful the more than 300 same-sex marriages recently performed in the State of Michigan for the purposes of federal law and eligibility for federal benefits.
On March 21, U.S. District Court Judge Bernard Friedman struck down Michigan’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and its implementing statutes as a violation of the Equal Protection Clause. Judge Friedman also ordered that the State of Michigan be enjoined from enforcing the ban as well as declined to stay his order. One day later, in joyous celebrations across the state, more than 300 same-sex couples were lawfully married.
Since that time, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, at the request of Michigan’s Governor and Attorney General, has issued an indefinite stay, blocking additional same-sex couples from exercising a long-denied right and casting unnecessary legal uncertainty over those couples who were recently married.
We appreciate your continued leadership role in the Executive Branch’s implementation of the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in United States v. Windsor. The Court’s decision was a historic step toward equal protection for all American families, regardless of sexual orientation. By clarifying the federal status of these now married same-sex couples in Michigan—as you did in January for similarly situated same-sex couples in Utah—you can take another step toward full equality.
Sen. Debbie Stabenow
Sen. Carl Levin
Rep. John Dingell
Rep. Sander Levin
Rep. Gary Peters
Rep. Dan Kildee
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