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Gov. Dalrymple says North Dakota will abide same-sex marriage mandate

BISMARCK - North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple said Friday morning the state will follow the U.S. Supreme Court's decision outlawing bans on same-sex marriage, and some county officials - including those in Fargo - say they're ready to do some immed...

BISMARCK - North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple said Friday morning the state will follow the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision outlawing bans on same-sex marriage, and some county officials - including those in Fargo - say they're ready to do some immediately. 

“The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that same-sex marriage is legal throughout the nation and we will abide by this federal mandate,” Dalrymple said in a one-sentence statement.

Related:  U.S. Supreme Court rules in favor of same-sex marriages nationwide, overturning ND ban

A federal judge in Fargo decided in January to put cases challenging North Dakota’s ban on same-sex marriage on hold until the Supreme Court ruled on the matter. A law clerk for U.S. District Court Chief Judge Ralph Erickson said he was in a meeting Friday morning.

North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem pointed to the pending cases before Erickson when asked how the Supreme Court’s ruling would affect North Dakota.

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“Where this goes from here is, I guess, up to him to determine whether he’s ready to issue a ruling right now or whether he may want further briefing from the parties,” Stenehjem said. “Once he issues that order, that will inform officials what it is that is required of them.”

Carrie Clemens, the deputy treasurer in Cass County, said officials in Fargo would issue a marriage license to same-sex couples if any applied Friday morning. As of about 10 a.m., none had yet.  But Grand Forks County staff said they had not yet received direction on how to handle marriage applications from the State’s Attorney office.   Check back later for an update on this developing story.    Forum Reporter Anne Millerbernd contributed to this report. 

Related Topics: WAYNE STENEHJEM
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