Federal judge may rule today in PA same-sex marriage case

A federal judge is expected to issue his decision Tuesday in a challenge to Pennsylvania’s ban on same-sex marriage.

The ACLU, which is representing plaintiffs in the closely-watched case, said in a press release that it plans to hold rallies in major cities across the state following the ruling regardless of the outcome.

The ACLU and volunteer lawyers sued Gov. Corbett and his administration last July on behalf of 23 plaintiffs over the state's 1996 ban, which prohibits same-sex marriage in Pennsylvania and does not recognize such marriages performed elsewhere.

In the case before U.S. District Judge John E.Jones III, plaintiffs have argued the ban is unconstitutional because it excludes same-sex couples from the same legal benefits and protections as heterosexual couples.

 Both sides asked the court for a summary judgment last month ahead of the scheduled June trial date.

In the ten months since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the federal defense of marriage act similar marriage bans have fallen in states across the nation, among them New Jersey, or are being challenged in the courts.

The case before Jones, Whitewood v. Wolf, is one of seven same-sex marriage cases under consideration by courts in Pennsylvania.

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