Valley couple reacts to news of federal plan to extend benefits to same-sex couples

PARADISE VALLEY, AZ - After six years of dating, Arizona natives Rafael Vasquez and Humberto Niebla have decided to marry.

"My mom is so excited, my sister is already planning for it," said Niebla.

"We want to live like everybody else," said Vasquez.

The couple is currently entered in a contest with the ACLU called "My Big Gay Illegal Wedding," where five couples will be given their dream wedding in a state that recognizes gay marriage.

Rafael and Humberto say they would love to have a 1920s themed wedding on the beach in California. "Just get married with our closest friends and family. Something small," said Vasquez.

On Saturday, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the federal government plans to extend federal benefits to same sex couples – even in states where gay marriage is illegal. That basically means gay Americans would have the same rights as straight couples when it comes to testifying in court, filing for bankruptcy, even visiting partners in prison.

"We will never stop working to ensure that equality under the law is protected by the law," Holder said.

The news is a major milestone for this couple, who hope their marriage will soon be recognized in their home state of Arizona.

"We love Arizona," said Vasquez. "All our family is here. We don't want to leave Arizona, we want to bring equality here."

You can vote for Rafael and Humberto by visiting https://weddings.aclu.org/entry/178759 .

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