- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 9, 2014

South Carolina state officials won their request for a stay on gay marriages Thursday.

Before noon, the South Carolina Supreme Court issued an order for the state to maintain “the status quo” pending a federal ruling in a gay marriage case.

Charleston County Probate Court Judge Irvin Condon “and all other probate judges are hereby directed not to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples pending a decision by the Federal District Court in” Bradacs v. Haley, wrote five justices of the state’s highest court.

South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson, who asked for the high court’s intervention Wednesday afternoon, said: “Today’s action by the state Supreme Court upholds the rule of law in South Carolina.”

“Based on the court’s decision, I will continue to fulfill my oath as chief legal officer to defend the laws and the constitution of South Carolina until this issue is resolved by the federal courts,” he said.

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, who is a co-defendant with Mr. Wilson in the Bradacs lawsuit, said this week that her job is to “protect the Constitution” and “the Constitution says that marriage is defined between a man and a woman.”

The move came after Judge Condon Wednesday issued marriage applications to gay couples and said he would issue them marriage licenses once a mandatory 24-hour waiting period was over — unless ordered not to by a court.

The state Supreme Court’s ruling was issued in time to block Judge Condon.

The Bradacs case involves Katherine Bradacs and Tracie Goodwin, who married in the District a few years ago and filed a lawsuit in August seeking recognition of their marriage in South Carolina. They are challenging the state’s Defense of Marriage Law and a 2006 voter-passed amendment to the state Constitution that expressly forbids same-sex marriages in the state.

U.S. District Judge J. Michelle Childs is hearing the case; she has asked for legal briefs to be filed by Oct. 15.

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