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In the Nation


Judge ends state's gay-marriage ban

A federal judge struck down Utah's same-sex-marriage ban Friday in a decision that marks a drastic shift toward gay marriage in a conservative state where the Mormon Church has long been against it.

The decision set off a frenzy as the clerk in the state's most populous county began issuing marriage licenses to gay couples while state officials took steps to appeal the ruling and halt the process. "I am very disappointed an activist federal judge is attempting to override the will of the people of Utah," Utah Gov. Gary Herbert said.

In Salt Lake City, meanwhile, the mayor led the state's first gay wedding ceremony. - AP

Life support order

A judge has ordered a hospital to continue life support for a girl declared brain dead after what was supposed to be a routine tonsillectomy. The family of Jahi McMath, 13, sought the court order, saying doctors at Children's Hospital Oakland wanted to disconnect life support. The hospital said it could not comment - AP


Evacuation lifted

A large industrial fire that started Wednesday at a federal Superfund site has been put out and emergency officials said Friday that it was safe for about 300 evacuated residents to go home. The EPA is continuing to monitor air quality. - AP