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Cecil Whig - - FRONT PAGE -

To the po­ten­tial loss of Elkton’s last ves­tige to its hey­day as the “Mar­riage Cap­i­tal of the East.” The His­toric Lit­tle Wed­ding Chapel, the last op­er­at­ing chapel on Elkton’s Main Street, went to auc­tion this week, but found no new owner as Ce­cil Bank, the mort­gage holder, ended up pur­chas­ing the build­ing for $60,000. Of­fi­cials said that the bank will try to fa­cil­i­tate a pri­vate sale in the fu­ture as the chapel works its way through the fore­clo­sure process. Mean­while, the former owner the Rev. Frank Smith said he would stay as long as pos­si­ble, with the last sched­uled wed­dings for the chapel set in July. At the turn of the 20th cen­tury, many of Maryland’s bor­der states in­sti­tuted 48-hour waits for cou­ples to use a mar­riage li­cense, but the Free State car­ried on un­fet­tered. At one time, more than 15 chapels per­formed thou­sands of wed­dings, mostly for elop­ers, along Elkton’s streets in a year. Even celebri­ties such as base­ball great Wil­lie Mays and ac­tress Joan Fon­taine went to Elkton to tie the knot. Af­ter Maryland in­sti­tuted its own 48-hour wait in 1938, how­ever, the at­trac­tion of Elkton waned, although mar­riages were still pop­u­lar for years. The His­toric Lit­tle Wed­ding Chapel was still pop­u­lar with fam­i­lies who have had gen­er­a­tions of mem­bers marry there, and hun­dreds of peo­ple com­mented on the Whig’s ini­tial re­port­ing on so­cial me­dia. We too lament the pos­si­ble loss of Elkton’s last chapel, and we hope a new owner rec­og­nizes its his­tor­i­cal im­por­tance.

To the im­pact of the Repub­li­can stale­mate’s im­pact on Supreme Court de­ci­sions levied on Thurs­day. One of the most high-pro­file cases heard by the nation’s high­est court was one about whether the pres­i­dent has the abil­ity to al­low il­le­gal im­mi­grants, who are parents of cit­i­zens or law­ful per­ma­nent res­i­dents, to re­main in the coun­try and ap­ply for work per­mits if they have been here at least five years and have not com­mit­ted felonies or re­peated mis­de­meanors. More than 25 states suc­cess­fully fought the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion’s ac­tion in lower court rul­ings, and on Thurs­day, in a 4-4 rul­ing, the Supreme Court es­sen­tial de­ferred fur­ther ac­tion. One seat on the nine-member panel re­mains va­cant due to the death of Jus­tice An­tonin Scalia ear­lier this year and the re­fusal of con­gres­sional Repub­li­cans to consider a re­place­ment of­fered by the pres­i­dent, who has nom­i­nated Judge Mer­rick Gar­land. Whether you agree with the pres­i­dent’s ac­tions or not, the GOP’s con­tin­ued ab­di­ca­tion of their du­ties as con­gres­sional mem­bers is an af­front to our democ­racy, and one that should be rec­ti­fied in or­der to elim­i­nate such em­bar­rass­ing non-de­ci­sions by our high­est court in the fu­ture.

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