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What’s next in same-sex marriage battle? Governor, county clerk discuss implications

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – People on both sides of the same-sex marriage debate are wondering what’s next, with the issue likely headed for the U.S. Supreme Court.

Thursday, a federal appellate court ruled Indiana’s ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional. The ruling is just another step that paves the way for the Supreme Court to ultimately decide whether marriages that took place at the City-County Building in downtown Indianapolis and all across the state are in fact legal.

Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller said his office will ask the U.S. Supreme Court for a stay of Thursday’s ruling, until the court can take up and rule on a same-sex marriage case.

At this point, same-sex couples cannot legally go out and get married in Indiana, despite Thursday’s decision. The stay of the lower court decision remains in effect because the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has not filed a mandate yet finalizing its ruling.

After yesterday’s decision, Katie Burris and Evangeline Cook came to the clerk’s office to try and get a marriage license. But as it turns out, they couldn’t.

“It was a moment that was the highest of highs and lowest of lows but it’s something we came in expecting,” said Burris.

“Honestly, it was really disappointing but I think we’re making a lot of progress in the right direction,” said Cook.

FOX59 also spoke Friday with Gov. Mike Pence about the ruling, and the immediate ramifications.

“Our general counsel has indicated to us that the matter remains as it was before the 7th circuit’s decision,” said Pence. “My hope is that ultimately the court will decide in favor of the states to allow the people of the states to craft laws in this area, but we recognize this is ultimately going to be resolved by the Supreme Court of the United States.”

Marion county clerk Beth White says if anything change, her office will be ready to go.

“The stay, which is the legal mechanism to keep things on hold, is still in effect and so we’re just waiting,” said White.

“We’re just like anyone else,” said Cook. “We want to start a family, we want to be a couple and get married and have everything that goes along with that.”

“I don’t want anyone to come at this (stay) as a disappointment,” said Burris. “(The ruling) was definitely a win, so I am looking forward to seeing what’s coming around the corner.”