The office of Rick Snyder, Michigan's Republican governor, announced yesterday that while the 322 same-gender marriages performed in that state on March 22 are legal and valid, his administration has decided to "suspend" the state's recognition of them -- and the rights that go along with them -- unless and until ordered otherwise or all avenues of appeal have been exhausted.
Snyder's statement reads:
"After comprehensive legal review of state law and all recent court rulings, we have concluded that same-sex couples were legally married at county clerk offices in the time period between U.S. District Judge Friedman's ruling and the 6th U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals temporary stay of that ruling.
"In accordance with the law, the U.S. Circuit Court's stay has the effect of suspending the benefits of marriage until further court rulings are issued on this matter. The couples with certificates of marriage from Michigan courthouses last Saturday were legally married and the marriage was valid when entered into. Because the stay brings Michigan law on this issue back into effect, the rights tied to these marriages are suspended until the stay is lifted or Judge Friedman's decision is upheld on appeal."
This is the same tactic taken by Gary Herbert, the equally anti-LGBT governor of Utah, who also refuses to recognize the approximately 1,300 legal and valid marriages performed in that state while his administration fights to preserve marriage discrimination. Both men are going out of their way to deliberately shame, humiliate, and harm same-sex couples and their children, under the guise of "protecting marriage" and "defending the family." Despicable.
The American Civil Liberties Union, one of the country's staunchest defenders of the rights of same-gender couples, has vowed to take Snyder's administration to court in the event that the state refuses to recognize its own validly-issued marriage licenses. Let's hope they slap him with that lawsuit posthaste.