Oregon Recognizes Gay Marriages from Other States - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Oregon Recognizes Gay Marriages from Other States

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PORTLAND, OR - Although it's illegal for same-sex couples to marry in Oregon, the state is now recognizing the marriages of those who tie the knot in another state or country.

In a memo sent to state agencies Wednesday, state Chief Operating Officer Michael Jordan said any same-sex couple who gets married in a place where it is legal, will now be eligible for the same benefits as any other married couple.

The state says Jordan's decision was based on a legal opinion from the Oregon Department of Justice.

Oregon voters will decide in 2014 on an initiative to overturn the state's constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.

Since 2004, the Oregon Constitution has stated it is the policy of Oregon and its political subdivisions, that only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or legally recognized as a marriage. 

Domestic partnerships in the state have been allowed since 2008.

Same sex couples can legally get married in California, Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington state, and the District of Columbia.

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