Mar 5, 2014 5:14 AM by Associated Press
CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois' attorney general says county clerks statewide can immediately begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples even though the state law legalizing gay marriage doesn't take effect until June.
Democratic Attorney General Lisa Madigan issued the guidance Tuesday in response to a question from Macon County Clerk Stephen Bean.
A state law legalizing same-sex marriage takes effect June 1, but a federal judge in Chicago ruled last month that Illinois' original ban on gay marriage was unconstitutional.
The court said the ruling only applied to Cook County. But in a letter to Bean, Madigan said that because current restrictions on gay marriage are unconstitutional, same-sex couples asking for a marriage license in any county can be given one.
Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn says county clerks should quickly follow Madigan's guidance.
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
15 hours ago
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