November 12th, 2009 | Uncategorized

A year of gay marriage in Connecticut

It’s been a year since Barbara and Robin Levine-Letterman left City Hall as the first same-sex couple to be issued a marriage license by the state. The Oct. 10, 2008 state supreme court decision in the landmark case, Kerrigan et. al. v. Commissioner of Public Health, was split four to three in favor of granting gays and lesbians the right to marry, and took effect on Nov. 12. Writing for the majority, Justice Richard N. Palmer wrote that “our conventional understanding of marriage must yield to a more contemporary appreciation of the rights entitled to constitutional protection.” That day took on special significance as a counterpoint to the passage just a week earlier of Proposition 8 in California, which invalidated a state supreme court ruling legalizing gay marriage and was seen as a major setback for the national gay rights movement.