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No matter how the state chooses to characterize its request, said Utah Democratic Sen. Jim Dabakis, the result it has on Utah families is irrefutable.
"You can’t imagine what it’s like when you wait years and years to finally be united as a family and then a judge says OK, and there’s great celebration and tears and joy, and finally your family and your children have the same protection as every other child in the state of Utah," Dabakis said. "And then, declaring himself chief prosecutor, judge, jury and everything else, the attorney general says, ‘No, I’m disallowing that adoption on a whim.’ And that’s what he did by ordering these state agencies to not follow the procedures to complete a judge-ordered adoption."
Dabakis, who is openly gay and was married in the 17-day window, accused Reyes of using the same-sex marriage case to gain political ground rather than represent the best interest of all Utahns.
That’s not the case, the AG’s Office said in a written statement.
"The state is not attempting to undo adoptions, restrain custody rights, nor suggest that these families are not serving the best interest of their children," spokeswoman Missy Larsen wrote. "What the State is doing is exercising its right to seek clarification from Utah’s highest court as to whether it can issue amended birth certificates."
A ruling from the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, which heard arguments from the state seeking to overturn Shelby’s ruling last month, would also lend clarity to the question of whether same-sex marriage in Utah may, ultimately, be legalized.
The federal court has put the case on an expedited calendar and could rule any day.
It’s widely anticipated that after the appeals court rules, the case will be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court along with several similar cases from around the country.
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