Bill Minor – New law could make Mississippi “Reno South”

We can’t lure cotton mills to Mississippi any more, but now we’re evidently going after marriage mills. Under a newly enacted law, we could become Reno South — wedding chapels, frock-tailed preachers and all.

Astonishingly, in one fell swoop, the Republican-controlled Legislature has wiped out the state’s 55-year-old law requiring a three-day waiting period and a blood test to get a marriage license. Gov. Phil Bryant, who seems to be the state’s self-proclaimed morality monitor, signed it.

Republican Sen. Melanie Sojourner of Natchez, the bill’s sponsor, said local tourism folks asked for the measure to lure more out-of-state couples to wed at the city’s stately old mansions. The freshman lawmaker said her research led her to believe an easier marriage law would be an incentive for more in-state couples to take wedding vows.

Bill Minor
5/17/12