Five Counties Not Giving Marriage Licenses To Same Sex Couples
Jun. 26, 2014
Five Indiana counties are not issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, despite a federal judge's ruling that the state's ban on same-sex marriage was unconstitutional.
Daviess County Clerk Sherry Healy told the Indiana Lawyer she would not do so for religious reasons and would continue to refuse unless she was ordered otherwise.
Other clerks have said they're waiting for the Indiana State Department of Health to issue new application forms. The old forms have spaces to list the "male" and "female" applicants. And some clerks say they've been advised by county attorneys that Wednesday's ruling only applied to the four counties named In U.S. District Judge Richard Young's order - Hamilton, Boone, Lake and Porter Counties. "It is correct that if the county clerks were not parties to the lawsuit, they are not in contempt of court by failing to comply," said Ken Falk, legal director for the ACLU of Indiana. "But given that the judge has indicated that the statute is unconstitutional on its face, meaning it's unconstitutional for everyone in all applications in Indiana, we are going to ask the county attorneys if they could do what is necessary to get those marriage certificates issued in those counties."
Even as he filed an emergency appeal to Judge Young to put his order on hold during an appeal, Attorney General Greg Zoeller said the state would comply, as did Governor Pence. But Zoeller only asked clerks in other counties to respect the order - neither he nor any other state official ordered them to comply. "We are waiting a little bit to see what shakes out, and then we will be getting in touch with those county attorneys," Falk said. "Theoretically, we could bring new litigation. Obviously, with this case pending and a stay pending, that might not happen. I am hoping that when we have a chance to communicate with the county attorneys, we can work that out."