Mass. governor tracks same-sex couples

May 19, 2004 at 10:20 AM
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BOSTON, May 19 (UPI) -- Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has targeted four communities he suspects defied his orders not to perform same-sex marriages for out-of-state couples.

Officials in Somerville, Worcester, Springfield and Provincetown said they were called by the governor's legal counsel and told to send the applications to the state immediately, the New York Times reported Wednesday.

Romney, who opposes same-sex marriage, has threatened to fine or criminally prosecute town clerks who issue licenses to out-of-state couples. He said the state will not record those marriages and will inform the couples their marriages are "null and void."

"This is an unprecedented request," said Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone of Somerville, where about 12 of the 45 marriage applications since Monday have been from out-of-state couples.

"I do have concerns that there's a political focus on these out-of-state couples," Curtatone said. "Those couples came here in good faith."

More than a thousand same-sex couples have applied for marriage licenses in the state since Monday.

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