MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Same sex marriage is one step closer to becoming reality in Florida.
It’s a day of celebration for Todd and Jeff Delmay. They are one of six same-sex couples who filed a lawsuit against the state for Florida back in January for denying their request for a marriage license.
“We did not want to go to another state where it is legal to get married. That was never a question. We want to do it and we want to feel whole as a family, as a unit here in Florida and that’s almost here and that’s really, really exciting,” said Jeff Delmay.
“We’re so excited. We’re about to have our 12th anniversary together as a couple in January so it’s like an early anniversary present,’ said Todd Delmay.
The opinion issued by the 11th District Court deals with another lawsuit –a federal lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and Safeguarding American Values for Everyone (SAVE) on behalf of eight other same-sex couples and a widow.
In that case, in August, a U.S. District Court ruled Florida’s same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional but the decision was stayed pending an appeal.
“When the judge issued his ruling, he put a stay. What that means is that the ruling did not go immediately into effect,” said ACLU Spokesperson Baylor Johnson.
The state requested to extend the stay and keep the marriage ban in place but on Wednesday the 11th Circuit Court refused to grant that request, paving the way for the possibility of same-sex couples to wed starting as early as the night of January 5th.
“January 6th is the 12th day of Christmas if you know the song, so this Christmas is going to be really special because on the 12th day of Christmas, marriage will come to Florida,” said Todd Delmay.
The Christian Family Coalition issued a statement on Wednesday in regards to the court’s decision saying, “It is a travesty of justice that the 11th Circuit Court of Appeal has refused to extend the stay in Florida’s homosexual “marriage” case and has therefore, violated the constitutionally protected voter rights of eight million Floridians who cast their ballot in the historic 2008 elections which overwhelmingly respected marriage as the union of one man, one woman. We urge Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi to immediately appeal this decision to the United States Supreme Court.”
Florida would be the 36th state to recognize same-sex marriage if the stay is lifted.
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