August 8, 2013

A Pennsylvania law banning same-sex marriage is quickly losing its authority, as a growing number of state officials are choosing to openly defy the legislation rather than wait for the result of a federal court challenge.

Mayor John Fetterman of Braddock on Monday officiated the first same-sex marriage in Allegheny County, after the couple, John Kandray and Bill Gray, obtained a marriage license from another official-gone-rogue in Montgomery County, about four hours away. D. Bruce Hanes, the register of wills in Montgomery County, began issuing same-sex marriage licenses two weeks ago, and Kandray and Gray decided to seize the opportunity.

“It’s an act of civil disobedience,” said Fetterman on MSNBC Thursday. The message to Republican Gov. Tom Corbett, he said, referencing President Reagan’s iconic challenge to Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, is:  “Mr. Corbett, tear down this law.”

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