Detroit federal trial threatens Michigan same-sex marriage ban

Today marks the beginning of trial in Detroit federal court challenging Michigan’s ban on same-sex marriage.

With potential state-wide repercussions, it’s a case that’s on the radar of the local Berrien County Clerk’s Office.

“What I've heard from the County Clerk in Oakland county where this case is being held is that it will probably go on for about 2 weeks,” said County Clerk Sharon Tyler of Berrien County. “After the decision of the judge, then I will enforce the law at the direction of the Berrien County Corporate Counsel and the Attorney General's Office.”

Two Detroit-area nurses are targeting a state law that prevents them from jointly adopting each other's kids. They’re also hoping to overturn a 2004 amendment that banning same sex marriage in the state Michigan.

Critics of striking the ban argue that 59 percent, or 2.7 million Michigan voters voted to pass the bill in 2004.

Proponents same-sex marriage say times have changed.

“Our attorney general has been clinging to a 2004 amendment to the Constitution that upholds a gay marriage ban,” said Amanda Hirsh of the Berrien County Democratic Party. “But this is 10 years ago and change has been coming day by day, state by state, across this country and we feel like it's time for change in Michigan.”


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