Around the Region: Wisconsin gears up for marriage equality


Even Wisconsin’s conservative leaders lament that the federal courts will end the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. And North Dakota’s LGBT community looks forward to a potential lawsuit challenging that state’s ban.

Wisconsin Democrats plan to reaffirm their support for marriage equality in the party platform, according to the Associated Press.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court declined to hear a marriage equality case. Katherine Halopka-Ivery and Linda Halopka-Ivery filed the suit in April. Eight other couples have filed a separate suit in federal court.

Gov. Scott Walker, who opposes marriage equality, sounded almost defeated on the issue this week:

“Any federal judge has got to look at that law not only with respect to the state’s constitution but what it means in terms of the U.S. Constitution, as well,” he explained. “Again, I’m not going to pretend to tell a federal judge in that regard what he or she should do about it.”

Dane County officials are already preparing for the ban to be struck down and are putting processes in place to help same-sex couples obtain marriage licenses.

Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen made an unusual legal move this week asking a federal judge to put an immediate hold on same-sex marriages if the judge rules that state’s ban is unconstitutional.

A poll released this week by Marquette University showed that 55 percent of Wisconsinites support marriage equality, while 39 percent opposed.

Milwaukee Pridefest is next weekend. Milwaukee Gay Arts Center Stage will host three days of performances, and entertainer Cazwell will headline, according to the Gazette

North Dakota

The state’s only openly-gay lawmaker spoke with the Jay Thomas Show on the possibility of a marriage equality lawsuit. North Dakota is the only state without marriage equality or a lawsuit seeking it.

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