Officials in Utah are asking for an emergency stay of a federal court ruling that found the state's ban on gay marriage is unconstitutional.
Within minutes of the federal court decision, the Salt Lake County Clerk's office was inundated with gay couples seeking marriage licenses.
And marriages were performed in the lobby and hallways long after the office was scheduled to close. The Utah attorney general's office hopes to get an emergency stay in the next few days from a federal appeals court in Denver.
Republican Gov. Gary Herbert condemned the ruling as judicial activism that overrides the will of the people. Voters in this predominately Mormon state overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage in 2004. But U.S. District Court Judge Robert Shelby ruled that the law irrationally demeans the dignity of same sex couples."
"I am very disappointed an activist federal judge is attempting to override the will of the people of Utah," Herbert said in a statement .