Same-sex couples in Hawaii have been waiting since the first marriage lawsuit was filed in the early '90s to marry. They'll finally get a chance this week, with the state accepting license applications as of midnight Monday night. But there's a slim chance that marriage equality might get taken away again.
The culprit: Rep. Bob McDermott, who filed a lawsuit last week that seeks to overturn the new marriage equality law. Last month McDermott tried -- and failed -- to prevent the law from taking effect. His latest suit will get a hearing in January.
In the meantime, couples can go ahead and marry. But if McDermott wins, what happens to their licenses? That's anyone's guess. According to McDermott, a preexisting law prohibits the legislature from enacting a marriage equality law. He might push for an annulment of all the licenses issued to same-sex couples.
Or we could face a situation similar to California after the passage of Prop 8: Couples married in the window of legal marriage could keep their license, but no new licenses could be issued.
In any event, McDermott's chances of success are slim. This is a last-ditch effort to overturn a bill that was meticulously crafted to withstand just such a challenge. Nevertheless, it's a potential roadblock worth watching.