“I have determined that the same-sex marriages performed last Saturday in Michigan will be recognized by the federal government. These families will be eligible for all relevant federal benefits on the same terms as other same-sex marriages. The Governor of Michigan has made clear that the marriages that took place on Saturday were lawful and valid when entered into, although Michigan will not extend state rights and benefits tied to these marriages pending further legal proceedings,” Holder said.
“For purposes of federal law, as I announced in January with respect to similarly situated same-sex couples in Utah, these Michigan couples will not be asked to wait for further resolution in the courts before they may seek federal benefits to which they are entitled.”
Holder reiterated the importance of the Windsor ruling at the Supreme Court in June 2013.
“Last June’s decision by the Supreme Court in United States v. Windsor was a victory for equal protection under the law and a historic step toward equality for all American families. The Department of Justice continues to work with its federal partners to implement this decision across the government. And we will remain steadfast in our commitment to realizing our country’s founding ideals of equality, opportunity, and justice for all.”
“The 300 loving couples in Michigan are as married as any couple on the planet. The Attorney General’s decision today respects the legality – and the dignity – of their marriages. It’s time for Michigan and other discriminating states to do right by all families, and get themselves on the right side of history,” said Freedom to Marry President Evan Wolfson.