Openly gay Ala. lawmaker marries partner in Mass. - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

Openly gay Ala. lawmaker marries partner in Mass.

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Alabama state representative Patricia Todd (left) married her partner Jennifer Clark recently in Massachusetts. Source: Patricia Todd's Facebook page Alabama state representative Patricia Todd (left) married her partner Jennifer Clark recently in Massachusetts. Source: Patricia Todd's Facebook page
Jennifer Clark and Patricia Todd. Source: Patricia Todd's Facebook page Jennifer Clark and Patricia Todd. Source: Patricia Todd's Facebook page
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

Alabama's only openly gay lawmaker is now married and she plans to challenge the state's ban on same sex marriage.

Today Fox6 News caught up with Representative Patricia Todd of Birmingham after she returned from getting married in Massachusetts.

"It feels great," Todd said.

Todd said she became emotional when signing her marriage license application. Todd said she married her longtime companion of eight years, Jennifer Clark, not for political reasons but for personal ones.

"Now we are legally recognized as a unit and made a commitment before God and our friends to take care of each other," Todd said.

Todd and Clark are back in Birmingham and they are looking to live their lives as a married couple in a state that overwhelmingly passed a constitutional amendment opposing same sex marriage.

"We will not overturn that constitutional amendment. We will use the courts to our advantage to make that change. There are already a hundred or more cases making their way to the Supreme Court around this," Todd said.

Todd does not know when a federal lawsuit will be filed if the state revenue department fails to recognize their marriage on a tax return or if an insurance company does not provide health coverage. But Todd said a lawsuit will be filed seeking to overturn the ban. The couple expects to see strong opposition

"Of course we are concerned about potential violence or hatred directed at us that may be harmful to us physically," Todd said.

Todd said the couple is tough and prepared for any opposition. Todd admits she was raised Catholic and was at one time married to a man at an early age. The state representative said her religious faith remains strong to carry on this fight.

"I have a very deep faith in God. I am a Christian and my God believes it's all about love," Todd said.

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