|Deb Mell (right) with Christin Baker (left)
"Dear Friends, It is with great sadness I tell you my marriage with Christin has ended. As you know divorce is painful, therefore we ask for privacy as we go through this process. Thank you for your continued support and understanding," Mell wrote on Twitter. The Chicago Sun-Times independently confirmed the news.Mell is also the sister-in-law of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, who is currently serving a lengthy prison sentence in a federal penal institution in Colorado following his removal from office from impeachment and conviction on multiple counts stemming from a federal public corruption probe. Mel was the sole member of the Illinois House of Representatives to vote against Blagojevich's impeachment.
Incidentally, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals is expected to rule any day now on Blagojevich's appeal of his convictions. Some legal observers believe the Court is likely to throw out some, if not all, of the convictions against Blagojevich based on the tone of the tough questioning of government attorneys by a panel of judges led by Judge Frank Easterbrook, who questioned whether acts that amounted to no more than political horse-trading can constitute a federal crime. Easterbrook pointed out that Dwight Eisenhower made a deal with California Gov. Earl Warren to appoint him to the Supreme Court in exchange for his support in his first run for president in 1952.
UPDATE: The Indianapolis Star reports that a judge in Monroe County, Valerie Haughton, granted the first same-sex divorce in Indiana this past week during the short three-day window during which same-sex marriages were legally recognized.
The ruling — which came during a three-day window last week when same-sex marriage was legal in Indiana — brought an official end to the broken personal and legal relationship of former Indianapolis residents Melanie Davis and Angela Summers.
While the timing of the divorce ruling amid the gay-marriage window was coincidental, the couple's long, tangled journey through the Indiana court system reveals the challenges ahead for other married same-sex couples should they seek a divorce in Indiana.
In fact, legal experts say, it may be years before another same-sex couple is able to secure a divorce in the state.Happy to say that I was raised by parents who took the words "until death do us part" to heart.