King County plans to pull an all-nighter on the first day marriage licenses are available to same-sex couples under Washington state law. On Thursday, Dec. 6, at 12:01 a.m., the county is scheduled to open its licensing office in downtown Seattle.
County Executive Dow Constantine said the office will stay open extra hours Dec. 6-8.
"We expect high demand for a while, so we’re putting on some extra shifts," Constantine said. "We're doing this because I don't think, frankly, people should have to wait a moment longer to get the rights that they’ve always had, and the voters of the state have finally recognized."
Speaking on KUOW's Weekday, Constantine said he plans to personally sign the first batch of licenses. He said he’ll use a pen Governor Chris Gregoire gave him after she signed the state’s same-sex marriage law this year. That’s the law voters upheld in last week’s election.
Washington has a three-day waiting period for marriage licenses to become valid. So Dec. 9 is the earliest day gay couples can legally get married in the state.
Pierce County has also scheduled extra licensing hours starting on Dec. 6.