Maryland State Senate to debate gay marriage prohibition

A Maryland state senator has introduced a measure that would prohibit the state from recognizing gay marriages authorized elsewhere without legislative approval.

Sen. Nancy Jacobs, R-Harford, says her bill is intended to invalidate a recent opinion from Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler.

2/26/2009
Maryland Attorney General says marriage equality must be recognized

State agencies in Maryland must now recognize out-of-state marriages between gay people – until the Legislature or courts decide otherwise.

Maryland’s Attorney General Doug Gansler [pictured] issued a long-awaited legal opinion – and told reporters he believes his opinion will be addressed “in the near future by litigants.”

“This will be ultimately resolved in the courts,” Gansler told reporters.

Gansler’s opinion concluded that the state’s highest court likely would rule that legal gay marriages in other states are valid in Maryland, but he noted the matter “is not free from all doubt.”

Maryland law defines marriage as between a man and woman, but Gansler wrote that the state generally acknowledges couples married elsewhere. Maryland is one of six states that does not specifically address the validity of same-sex marriages from other states.

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