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Mass wedding in Orlando on first day of legalized same-sex unions

ORLANDO, Fla. - More than 40 same-sex couples were married Tuesday morning on the steps outside City Hall in Orlando, Florida.

The state's ban on same-sex marriage ended at midnight -- and court clerks in some counties wasted no time, issuing marriage licenses and performing weddings in the early morning hours.

At the Orlando event, there was a four-tier wedding cake featuring a rainbow-colored bottom. Orlando's gay chorus sang, "Over the Rainbow." Many of the couples were accompanied by their young children.

At a courthouse in Kissimmee, south of Orlando, County Commissioner Cheryl Grieb married Patti Daughterty, her partner of 22 years. She said, "It's been a long time coming" -- and that she and her new wife are "just so excited and so happy."

Florida Family Action filed a lawsuit against Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer in an effort to stop the ceremony, as well as others across the state, reports CBS affiliate WKMG in Orlando. The group fought for a gay marriage ban in Florida, which was approved by voters in 2008.

Florida - the third-most populous state, with 19.9 million people - becomes the 36th state where gay marriage is legal. Seventy percent of Americans now live in states where same-sex couples can legally wed.

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, a potential 2016 presidential candidate, said he respects the court ruling that allows same-sex couples to wed in the Sunshine State.

"We live in a democracy, and regardless of our disagreements, we have to respect the rule of law," Bush said in a statement.

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