KANSAS: State Supreme Court Stops Marriage Licenses In Johnson County

Via the Associated Press:

The Kansas Supreme Court has blocked the state’s most populous county from issuing marriage licenses to gay couples, hours after the first one was issued under an order from a lower-court judge. The Supreme Court issued a three-page order in response to a petition filed by Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt. The high court said it acted for “statewide consistency.” The Supreme Court set a hearing for Nov. 6. Schmidt argued that the chief district court judge in Johnson County exceeded his authority in ordering clerks and other judges to approve marriage applications from gay couples, despite a ban on gay marriage in the state constitution.


UPDATE: More to the story from Buzzfeed.

In response to a request from the Kansas attorney general earlier Friday, the court issued the Friday evening order refusing to grant the attorney general’s request for an immediate order that the licenses could not be issued — noting that “the Attorney General’s right to relief on the merits is not clear.” Instead, the Kansas Supreme Court granted the temporary stay and set a schedule for a full briefing of the issues involved — including the question of “whether Kansas’ state constitutional, statutory, or common law bans on same-sex marriage are permissible under the United States Constitution.”