Minneapolis mayor to marry lesbian couple, confronting South Dakota's ban on marriage equality

Nancy Robrahn and Jennie Rosenkranz have been together for 27 years, have 4 children together and want to marry. But their home state of South Dakota has a constitutional ban on marriage equality. So Nancy and Jennie will be traveling to Minneapolis MN. where Mayor Betsy Hodges will marry the city’s welcome couple. The couple plan to challenge their states ban when they return to their home in Rapid City SD.

“We are approaching the time when end of life decisions and plans need to be made.  There are many federal protections that will become available to us through this Minnesota marriage. We hope to see the day when couples like us don’t have to travel out of South Dakota to marry,” said Robrahn.

Upon returning home, the pair will join two other South Dakota couples and, together, will file a federal class action civil rights lawsuit against South Dakota government officials.  The lawsuit, which will soon be filed in United States District Court, will seek to overturn South Dakota’s same-sex marriage ban and to require the state to recognize marriages performed out of state. Attorney Joshua Newville of Minneapolis-based Madia Law LLC represents all three couples. “These couples show that love and commitment exist in South Dakota just as they exist in Minnesota and beyond.  South Dakota has failed to treat all of its citizens with the dignity and respect deserved by all people.  With the filing of this lawsuit, we will lead South Dakota down a better path,” said Newville.

At 1:00 P.M. on Saturday, April 26, 2014, Mayor Hodges will marry the couple in a private ceremony at the Community of Christ Church in North Minneapolis.  The ceremony will be followed by a press conference at 1:30 P.M., where the Mayor will introduce the couple as, “Mrs. and Mrs. Rosenbrahn.”

It's sad that a loving couple who have shared 27 years together with 4 children have to leave their home state to find equality. South Dakota's ban on marriage equality hurts families and creates concerns for LGBT couples and families that legally recognized couples in South Dakota don't have to struggle with.

Towleroad.com has more on the story.