Status of Pa. same-sex licenses murky after ruling

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A Pennsylvania judge’s order stopping a suburban Philadelphia court clerk from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples leaves their legal status unclear.

Montgomery County Register of Wills Bruce Hanes said Thursday he might appeal, and other legal actions are pending or in the works.

Hanes says he’ll comply with the decision by Commonwealth Court Judge Dan Pellegrini. Hanes says he thinks the 174 licenses he handed out are legally valid.

Pellegrini says Hanes doesn’t have the power to decide on his own whether Pennsylvania’s same-sex marriage ban violates the state constitution.

A federal lawsuit challenging the same-sex marriage ban is pending in Harrisburg, and a couple who got a license from Hanes recently filed a lawsuit in Commonwealth Court.

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