Houston Mayor Parker marries longtime gay partner

10:58 AM ET, Jan 17, 2014
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Houston Mayor Annise Parker, the first openly gay mayor of a major city, married her longtime partner, Kathy Hubbard, on Thursday.

Parker, who was recently sworn in to a third term, and Hubbard have been together for 23 years. The couple got married in Palm Springs, Calif., where same-sex marriage is legal.

"This is a very happy day for us," Parker said in a statement released by the city. "We have had to wait a very long time to formalize our commitment to each other. Kathy has been by my side for more than two decades, helping to raise a family, nurture my political career and all of the other ups and down and life events that come with a committed relationship."

Parker had said she and Hubbard would not marry until their marriage was legal in the state of Texas. Parker posted her new marital status on Twitter.

The mayor announced in late November that the city would begin offering health and life insurance benefits to spouses of all legally married city employees regardless of their sexual orientation, according to the Houston Chronicle.

The city's statement on the couple's wedding states Hubbard has other insurance options available to her and will not participate in Houston's new policy on health insurance benefits for legally married city workers.

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