US: Judge strikes down Michigan’s ban on same-sex marriage

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A judge has declared a ban on same-sex marriages in Michigan unconstitutional.

Ruling today, U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman suggested that upholding a ban on same-sex marriage would be unfair to the children of gay couples.

The case, brought by nurses April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse, had initially been focussed on the rights of same-sex couples to adopt eachother’s children, but was broadened to include same-sex marriage.

The judge said: “No court record of this proceeding could ever fully convey the personal sacrifice of these two plaintiffs who seek to ensure that the state may no longer impair the rights of their children and the thousands of others now being raised by same-sex couples.”

Unlike judges in other states, Friedman did not immediately put a stay on his ruling, which would delay any enforcement of the ruling until after appeals.

The ruling is the fifth in recent months in which a ban has been declared unconstitutional, following Texas, Utah, Oklahoma and Virginia.

Same-sex marriage is currently legal in 17 states and DC.