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Court of Appeals in Cincinnati to Hear Arguments on Gay Marriage Bans

Bill Pugliano, Getty Images

The U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments this week on gay marriage bans. According to the Detroit News, it’s a historic first for the court – a three judge panel will hear separate arguments on Wednesday in same-sex marriage cases from Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee.

In Michigan’s case, the court will hear an appeal of a March ruling by U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman who ruled that the state’s ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional. Friedman’s ruling followed a nine-day trial in February in which two nurses from Hazel Park, April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse, challenged the ban. DeBoer and Rowse wanted to legally marry and adopt each other’s children.

In 2004, Michigan voters adopted the Michigan Marriage Amendment which stated marriage is between “one man and one woman.” In the case of DeBoer and Rowse, Friedman said it denied same-sex couples equal protection under the law. The couple will be in the courtroom hearing the arguments by their attorney. It could be up to three months before the three-judge panel issues a opinion in the case.

Rallies are planned for Cincinnati, and Warren and Lansing in Michigan.

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