Court ruling triggers rush for gay couples to marry in Wisconsin
Dozens of gay couples have married in Wisconsin, taking advantage of what may be a small window in which to wed before the US state's same-sex marriage ban is reinstated, at least temporarily.
Milwaukee county clerk Joe Czarnezki said couples were lined up outside his court at 6am on Saturday, three hours before it opened. Within 30 minutes of the offices opening, about 45 couples had applied for marriage licences.
United States District Court judge Barbara Crabb issued a ruling on Friday afternoon striking down Wisconsin's ban on same-sex marriage just as the PrideFest gay festival was starting in Milwaukee.
Many couples who married on Saturday morning said they attended the festival the night before, but then got up early and went to the court.
Also on Friday, seven couples filed a federal action challenging the prohibition on same-sex marriage in the state of North Dakota, making it the last US state with a ban to be sued by gay couples seeking the right to wed in their home state.