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Same-sex marriages put on hold in Indiana by federal appeals court

By John Newsome, CNN
updated 4:34 PM EDT, Tue July 1, 2014
April Dawn Breeden, left, and longtime partner Crystal Peairs are married by the Rev. Katie Hotze-Wilton at St. Louis City Hall on Wednesday, November 5. A Missouri judge on November 5 overturned the state's ban on same-sex marriages and ordered registrars to start issuing licenses to gay and lesbian couples. More than 30 states and the District of Columbia allow marriage for same-sex couples. April Dawn Breeden, left, and longtime partner Crystal Peairs are married by the Rev. Katie Hotze-Wilton at St. Louis City Hall on Wednesday, November 5. A Missouri judge on November 5 overturned the state's ban on same-sex marriages and ordered registrars to start issuing licenses to gay and lesbian couples. More than 30 states and the District of Columbia allow marriage for same-sex couples.
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STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • A federal judge initially struck down Indiana's same-sex marriage ban Wednesday
  • But a federal appeals court has approved an emergency stay of that order
  • The state AG asked for the stay, citing "confusion and inconsistency"
  • A group supporting same-sex marriage says the stay "is a terrible blow"

(CNN) -- Same-sex marriages are on hold in Indiana after the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals approved an emergency stay request Friday evening.

Shortly after the state's ban on same-sex marriage was overturned by a federal judge Wednesday, Indiana Attorney General Gregory Zoeller's office announced it would file an appeal. His office filed an emergency motion with the federal appeals court.

The motion reads, in part, "Time is of the essence to stay the district court's final judgment ... in order to maintain the historic status quo of man-woman marriage that Indiana and its citizens have adopted."

Bryan Corbin, the attorney general's public information officer, released a statement to CNN saying, "The AG's Office noted the confusion and inconsistency for the public that has occurred since Wednesday as most county clerks are issuing marriage licenses to -- and performing marriages for -- same sex couples, but a few clerks are not."

Hoosiers Unite for Marriage, an Indiana group supporting same-sex marriage, expressed disappointment in the attorney general's office pursuing a stay.

"Hundreds of loving, committed couples were finally able to join in marriage this week, and we delivered more than 12,000 petition signatures today asking Attorney General Greg Zoeller not to pursue any appeals of the ruling overturning the state's ban on same-sex marriage," said Kyle Megrath of the group.

"More than anything, this is a terrible blow to the legally wedded Indiana couples and their families who were finally recognized this week under Indiana" he said.

The attorney general's office said that both sides will be able to submit arguments to the federal appeals court "in the appeal of the underlying lawsuits challenging Indiana's marriage law," as part of the stay.

A federal judge initially struck down the state's same-sex marriage ban Wednesday, saying it "violates the due process clause and equal protection clause and is, therefore, unconstitutional."

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