Range of South Florida voices, pro & con, on same-sex marriage rulings

Wilton Manors Mayor Gary Resnick riding in his city's gay pride parade on June. 22. His partner, Eric Bucher, is to Resnick's right.

If she could marry Harris, Lambert said, “I would no longer be a second-class citizen. I would have all the rights and privileges that every other married couple has.”

Would she get married? “Oh yes. Oh yes. No hesitation.”

Fort Lauderdale couple Nate Klarfeld, 62, a retired dentist, and Grover Lawlis, 64, a retired psychiatrist, said they’ll get married someday. Klarfeld said he is sure same-sex marriage eventually will become legal in Florida. “It’s a ‘when.’”

The couple has been together 10 years. After a year, they registered as domestic partners with Broward County. “I thought it was going to be this heart fluttering moment,” Klarfeld said. Instead, it requires a visit to a clerk in the county government office building. “It is about as romantic as getting a fishing license.”

Klarfeld said the domestic partnership cards helped them deal with hospitals when each medical emergencies. And they’ve invested in having legal documents drawn up to specify their wishes.

But marriage would mean something more, he said. “Being recognized by my community, which is the whole city, not just the gay community, that everyone recognizes our relationship as honorable as theirs,” he said. “Once you have a mortgage together, you’re married, that’s what I keep saying. But the words make a difference.”

2:10 p.m. | Politicians statements

From U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel, D-West Palm Beach:

“Today’s Supreme Court rulings mark a giant step forward for marriage equality. If we are truly a nation where the pursuit of happiness is for one and for all, then any person regardless of gender should be allowed to live in a committed relationship with the one they love. The Supreme Court rulings set us on this path, and there is more work to be done until there is equality in every state including Florida.”

From Broward County Young Republicans:

We applaud the Supreme Court decisions today regarding the status of marriage in United States.

By striking down the core of the Defense of Marriage Act, The Supreme Court made clear that states have a right to make decisions for themselves and the Federal Government must respect those decisions.  By vacating and remanding California's Proposition 8 in the Ninth Circuit, it upheld the District Court opinion that discrimination cannot be enshrined into a state constitution.

Straight or gay, all lovers of restrained government won in todays SCOTUS decisions.  We look forward to continued conversation on the relationship between We The People and our Government  

From U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Weston, chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee:

“Today is an historic day for marriage equality in America. The Supreme Court rulings released today brought our nation one step closer to realizing our Constitution’s promise of equality for all Americans. In striking down Section 3 of the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act, the Court ensured that married gay and lesbian couples are fully recognized by their government and will have the opportunity to benefit from the host of rights and benefits designed to strengthen and protect American families.

“From Social Security benefits to immigration rights, Americans who are legally married in a state that recognizes same-sex marriages will now be afforded the same federal recognition and federal benefits that any other married couple receives. In California, Proposition 8 which banned same-sex marriages is consigned to the trash-heap of history and California joins 12 other states and the District of Columbia in recognizing the freedom to marry whomever one loves.

“For married couples living in states that do not recognize their marriages, including Florida, there is still uncertainty. We must work to ensure that these couples receive the federal recognition and respect that they deserve. I am committed to working with my colleagues in Congress and the President to make that dream a reality. 

“Today also puts to an end House Republicans continued waste of millions of taxpayer dollars in their effort to defend their unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act. It is shameful that it took the highest court in the land to end their reprehensible fight to deny basic civil rights and justice to an entire group of Americans. Today’s ruling marked the seventh time that House Republicans were defeated in court, wasting $2.3 million of Americans’ hard earned tax dollars in their quest to defend inequality. It is my sincere hope that Republicans will now join Democrats in our focus on creating jobs, boosting our economy, and strengthening our families. 

“As a wife, I am proud that today is a joyous victory for countless American marriages. As a mother, I celebrate that today marks another step toward fairness and equality for all of our nation’s families. Freedom to marry for all Americans is within our nation’s grasp, and I look forward to working together to make it happen.”

From U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla.:

“I believe the Supreme Court made a serious mistake today when it overstepped its important, but limited role.  I do not believe that President Clinton and overwhelming bipartisan majorities of both houses of Congress acted with malice or intent to ‘demean’ a class of people when they adopted a uniform definition of marriage for the purposes of federal law.  The Court should not have second guessed the will of the American people acting through their elected representatives without firm constitutional justifications.  The sweeping language of today’s majority opinion is more troubling than the ruling itself as it points to further interference by the Court in the years to come.

“I recognize that the definition of marriage and the legal status of same-sex relationships is a deeply personal and emotional issue for Americans of a variety of viewpoints.  These types of disagreements should be settled through the democratic process, as the Founders intended, not through litigation and court pronouncements.