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Colorado Court Halts Gay Marriages in Boulder

The high court stopped a defiant clerk from issuing marriage licenses to gay couples, after weeks of legal wrangling over the issue.

The Colorado Supreme Court ordered the clerk in Boulder to stop issuing gay marriage licenses while the high court considers an appeal from the state’s attorney general. Boulder County Clerk Hillary Hall’s office has issued 202 marriage licenses to gay couples since June, after the Denver-based 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against Utah's same-sex marriage ban, but stayed the ruling pending an appeal.

Hall said in a statement to NBC News that she was "disappointed" with the order but has stopped issuing licenses to gay couples.

"Given the avalanche of recent cases determining that same-sex marriage bans are unconstitutional, I am hopeful the stay will be short-lived and that we will be able to resume issuing licenses soon,” she said.

Tuesday’s ruling was in response to an appeal from Republican Attorney General John Suthers, who has been trying for several weeks to get Boulder's clerk to stop giving marriage licenses to gay couples. Suthers wants same-sex marriage licenses to stop until the U.S. Supreme Court decides the issue. A lower judge earlier allowed Hall to continue issues licenses even while gay marriage was technically illegal, noting the ban was “hanging by a thread,” and Hall wasn’t harming anyone by granting licenses.


— Phil Helsel

Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.