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Despite latest court ruling Region 8 county clerks not issuing same-sex marriage licenses

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JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Despite the busyness of the past week, Craighead County Clerk Kade Holliday said his office will not rush the process when it comes to issuing same-sex marriage licenses. 

"It's been very, very busy, a lot of long nights, between this and early vote everything just kind of piled up all at once."

Pulaski County Circuit Judge Chris Piazza struck down all state laws that prevent same-sex couples from getting married, including removing the prohibition on county clerks issuing the marriage licenses. 

Even though the latest ruling clears the way for same-sex couples, Region 8 county clerks are not issuing licenses. Holliday believes too much uncertainty still hangs over clerks' offices statewide.

"Traditionally, whenever a circuit judge rules, it only applies to the defendants that are being named in that case. Craighead was not one of those defendants named in the initial case or in any subsequent case," he said. "We just want to wait and make sure that that ruling does apply to us after all before we start issuing them just so we can safeguard the citizens from potential litigation."

The defendants who are named in the case are Pulaski, Saline, Lonoke, Conway, White, and Washington counties. 
 
If the same sex marriage ban Arkansas voters approved in 2004 is lifted, Holliday said his office is prepared.

"We have went ahead and took this time to have our software updated so we can begin issuing gender neutral marriage licenses whenever the time is right, and whenever we get further guidance on whether Judge Piazza's ruling does apply to all 75 counties or just the six named defendants, whether that comes from the Arkansas Association of Counties, whether it comes from our legal counsel, or whether it comes from the Supreme Court of Arkansas or the Supreme Court of the United States."

 

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