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Judge rejects challenge to Hawaii's gay marriage law

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 2:11 p.m. HST, Jan 29, 2014

A Circuit Court judge this morning granted the state's motion for summary judgment and threw out state Rep. Bob McDermott's legal challenge to the state's gay marriage law.

Judge Karl Sakamoto ruled that the law, which took effect in December, is legal under both the state and federal constitutions. Sakamoto had previously denied McDermott's request for a temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction to block the law from taking effect.

Attorney General David Louie has argued that the state Legislature was within its power when it approved a gay marriage bill in special session last fall. Gov. Neil Abercrombie signed the bill into law.

Shawn Luiz, an attorney for McDermott, told the court that the Legislature needed to place another constitutional amendment before voters in order to change a 1998 constitutional amendment that gave the Legislature the power to restrict marriage to heterosexual couples.

McDermott, an Ewa Beach Republican who opposes gay marriage, said he would appeal the court's ruling.

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