12/27/2004 at 01:00 AM EST
and her partner of six years, Kelli Carpenter (left), tied the knot in San Francisco on Feb. 26, after mayor Gavin Newsom (below) put his stamp of approval on same-sex marriage. Mayors in several other states followed suit, but the honeymoon was brief. President Bush pressed for a Constitutional amendment banning gay marriage; it was shot down by the Senate in July, leaving the decision to state governments. Their responses have varied, from legalization in Massachusetts to a cease-and-desist order and a total void of all licenses issued in California.