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Marriage equality law takes effect in Maine; couples tie the knot in the first hours of the new law

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Associated Press
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January 2, 2013

Arriving in a limo, Donna Galluzzo and Lisa Gorney had all the trappings of a traditional wedding: Rings, flowers, wedding vows, an entourage and a friend to officiate. With tears in their eyes, they were among the first gay couples to exchange wedding vows early Saturday morning after Maine’s same-sex marriage law went into effect at midnight. “We’re paving the way for people to go after us. I think it’s just amazing. It’s freeing. It’s what’s right,” an emotionally drained Gorney said after their ceremony in front of City Hall. After waiting years and seeing marriage rights nearly awarded and then retracted, gay couples in Maine’s largest city didn’t have to wait a moment longer than necessary to wed, with licenses issued at the stroke of midnight as the law went into effect. Steven Bridges and Michael Snell were the first in line, and they received cheers from more than 200 people waiting outside after they wed in the clerk’s office. “It’s historic. We’ve waited our entire lives for this,” said Bridges, a retail manager, who’s been in a relationship with the Snell, a massage therapist, for nine years. Bridges, 42, and Snell, 53, wore lavender and purple carnations on black T-shirts with the words “Love is love.”