POLITICO reports that the Obama administration will recognize the marriages of more than 1,000 same-sex couples married in Utah before the U.S. Supreme Court issued an order Monday effectively halting the practice in that state, Attorney General Eric Holder announced Friday.
The move will allow the couples to access federal benefits available to married couples, such as the ability to file joint tax returns, while the courts mull the validity of the marriages and the court rulings that led to them.
The action is also something of a rebuff and counterpoint to the stance of Gov. Gary Herbert (R-Utah), who is declining to recognize the same-sex unions.
“I am confirming today that, for purposes of federal law, these marriages will be recognized as lawful and considered eligible for all relevant federal benefits on the same terms as other same-sex marriages,” Holder said in a videotaped statement. MORE...