Single Marriage Form Wins Bipartisan Praise

Mar 23, 2016

A Kentucky House panel has settled on a single compromise marriage license form that does away with the twin applications created by the Senate.

Karen Roberts, left, places a wedding band on the finger of her partner April Miller as they renew their vows in a public ceremony, Saturday, Oct. 24, 2015, in Morehead, Ky. Miller and Roberts were the plaintiffs in a suit filed against Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis by the American Civil Liberties Union in an attempt to have her office issue marriage licenses. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)
Credit AP

A previous plan passed out of the GOP-led Senate designating bride and groom on one application and party 1 and 2 on the other drew criticism from gay rights groups who objected to the separate forms. Under the House Judiciary Committee-backed bill, applicants could check "bride," "groom," or "spouse" and the final license would only list the specified titles.

Leading the charge for the single form was Louisville Democrat Morgan McGarvey.

"We've created a form that works for everyone, literally everyone from Kim Davis to the ACLU has endorsed the marriage license form we have because it's one form. It treats everyone equally, it's more efficient, and it costs less money that having two forms," he says.

Also signing on to the compromise legislation is Republican Gov. Matt Bevin, an outspoken supporter of Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis - who was jailed in 2015 for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.