Status of Indiana gay marriages undecided - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

Status of Indiana gay marriages undecided

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INDIANAPOLIS -

It could be months before same-sex couples who were married during the three days it was legal to do so in Indiana know whether their unions are valid.

Legal experts disagreed about the issue Saturday, and it isn't certain a clear answer could be reached any time soon.

An Indiana University law professor says when a federal appeals court put on hold a U.S. district judge's Wednesday ruling that struck down Indiana's prohibition on gay marriage, it "reset" the state's ban and invalidated the licenses issued.

But a spokesman for the state attorney general's office says it is uncertain whether those who were married before the court's stay are still married. He also said it will be up to the courts to decide later.

Meantime, the federal judge who struck down Indiana's gay marriage ban says he's well aware his decision upset some people, but says federal judges can't let public opinion affect their decisions.

U.S. District Judge Richard Young says it's for the common good that federal judges need concern themselves only with the cases before them.

He tells the Evansville Courier & Press the founding fathers made "a very wise decision" by giving federal judges lifetime tenures and making them "isolated from politics."

Young ruled last Wednesday that Indiana's same-sex marriage ban was unconstitutional. His ruling allowed hundreds of gay and lesbian couples to obtain marriage licenses around Indiana over a 3-day period, and many of them were wed.

A federal appeals court issued a stay Friday putting Young's ruling on hold.

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