New York gay couple denied marriage license
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A same-sex couple in New York was reportedly denied a marriage license from a town clerk in July. 

Dylan Toften, a resident of Root, N.Y., wrote on Facebook this week that he and his partner, Thomas Hurd, were rejected for a marriage license by the town clerk, Laurel Eriksen, according to The Daily Gazette. 


The Auburn Citizen reports that Eriksen made the decision to not issue the couple a marriage license on religious grounds. The news outlet noted that the deputy clerk was willing to grant the marriage license. 

But Toften told The Daily Gazette that he and Eriksen went to Cobleskill, N.Y., to obtain their marriage license. 

Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) responded to the news by directing the state Division of Human Rights to investigate why the same-sex couple was barred from receiving a marriage license. 

"The denial of a marriage license to a same sex couple yesterday in Montgomery County is an unconscionable act of discrimination that goes against our values as New Yorkers," he tweeted on Wednesday. "I am directing an investigation into this incident to ensure that it never happens again."

The Auburn Citizen reports that this is not the first time an incident like this has occurred. After the state's Marriage Equality Act was signed by Cuomo in 2011, Rose Marie Belforti, a town clerk in Ledyard, N.Y., said she would refuse to sign marriage licenses for gay couples. 

The current law bars marriage licenses from being rejected "on the ground that the parties are of the same, or a different, sex," the Citizen notes.