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Puerto Rico officials to stop opposing same-sex marriage

[JURIST] Puerto Rican officials announced Friday that Puerto Rico is ending its defense of a same-sex marriage ban. Article 68 of Puerto Rico's Civil Code [text] contains the territory's same-sex marriage rules. Justice Secretary César Miranda stated, "It [is] neither fair nor correct to defend the constitutionality of that law." This announcement comes after the US District Court for the District of Puerto Rico [official website] dismissed a challenge [JURIST report] to Puerto Rico's ban on same-sex marriage in October. Friday was the last day the territory had to answer the plaintiffs' arguments on appeal of the decision.

Same-sex marriage [JURIST new archive] continues to be one of the most polarizing legal topics in the US today. Same-sex marriage is permitted in 37 states and the District of Columbia. Earlier this week the Texas Attorney General challenged [JURIST report] a plan that proposed to extend benefits to same-sex couples. Earlier this month the US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit stayed a ruling [JURIST report] of the US District Court for the District of Nebraska that would have allowed same-sex couples in Nebraska to marry beginning on March 9. In February a Texas county judge ruled that the state's same-sex marriage ban was unconstitutional [JURIST report], but that decision was limited to the case at hand.

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