Same-Sex Marriages Continue Amid Legal Challenges

Published 05/13 2014 06:11PM

Updated 05/13 2014 06:39PM

More than 150 same-sex couples had the marriage license signed by an officiate and made official the first day they could in Pulaski County.
More than 150 same-sex couples had the marriage license signed by an officiate and made official the first day they could in Pulaski County.
LITTLE ROCK, AR - Attorneys representing same-sex couples filed a motion to dismiss an appeal from the state late Tuesday.

More than seventy same-sex couples received marriage licenses in Pulaski County on Tuesday, amid an uncertain legal standing going forward.

Vincent Garland and Justin Sears drove over fifty miles from White County to receive a marriage license on Tuesday.

"We're making history," Garland says. "I'm extremely happy, I've got butterflies, I'm about to cry and I'm just trying not to."

Meanwhile, legal counsel for same-sex couples also filed a response to the state's motion for a stay in the case.

If a stay is granted by the Arkansas Supreme Court, no additional marriage licenses could be granted to same-sex couples.

Attorney Jack Wagoner said in a ten-page brief that the state has not shown a valid reason for the supreme court to issue a stay.

"Appellants contend that a stay should be issued "to avoid confusion and uncertainty about the effect of the Circuit Court's order on Arkansas marriage law." That argument has no merit," the pleading says. "In contrast, the harms to Plaintiff's if the May 9 Order is stayed are immediate, real, continuing, undisputed, and irreparable."

Garland and Sears say no matter what happens going forward, they are happy today.

"We have it on a legitimate piece of paper," Garland says. "So even if Arkansas doesn't recognize it in the long run, it's recognized by the federal government, so it still stands."

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