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INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Six same-sex couples are challenging state law. They want to change wording on official records like birth and death certificates. The couples are filling a lawsuit against the Indiana State Health Commissioner and four county health departments including Marion, Vigo, Bartholomew and Tippecanoe.

All six cases involved in the lawsuit concern female same-sex couples who have decided to have a child or children.

One of those couples is Nicki and Tonya Bush-Sawyer of Indianapolis who already have a nearly two-year-old son who Nicki carried and birthed.

Although same-sex marriage is legal nationwide, many documents like birth and death certificates still only allow for a mother and father to be named, rather than two mothers. That means Nicki’s wife, Tonya, has to adopt their son after his birth in order to be his legal mother. It’s a process they say is expensive and also requires social workers to scrutinize their financial, professional and personal life.

Until that adoption is final, Tonya does not have any legal rights to her son, despite being a stay-at-home-mom with him.

“What if something were to happen and I’m away at work, she’s his caretaker. And yet she is treated, not to her face, but she could be legally treated as you know a baby-sitter, Nicki said.

The process the Bush-Sawyer family is going through now is actually called ‘step-parent adoption’, which Nicki says is insulting to her wife.

“The point is Tonya and I have been together since before our son was born, through the entire pregnancy, ever doctor’s visit, every sonogram, every kick, first cry, first whatever. She cut the umbilical cord. She was the coach at the birth. If we were a heterosexual couple, there would be no question that she would be on the birth certificate,” Nicki said.

The lawsuit cites an Indiana law that says a man is presumed to be a child’s biological father if the man and the child’s biological mother are married to each other. Therefore, these couples believe their should be presumed to be the parents of their children, because they are married and should not have to go through extra steps to be named on birth certificates and in less fortunate circumstances, death certificates.

The attorney representing all six couples said she will be filing a motion for summary judgment on this case Friday. That means they feel the evidence is so overwhelming that the case should not go to trial.

24-Hour News 8 did reach out to the Indiana State Health Department for comment, but they said they couldn’t talk about any pending litigation.

WASHINGTON D.C. (KRON) – The U.S. military is making big changes because of the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage.

The Department if Veterans Affairs announced Monday it will begin offering the same pension and death benefits to same-sex couples as to heterosexual veterans.

Families said they are hoping it happens soon. The agency said it will work quickly to make sure that its offices and employees are ready to deal with the changes.

Same-sex couples will no longer be denied VA disability pay, home loan guarantees, death pensions and burial rights based on the laws of the states where they’ve lived and worked.

AUSTIN (KXAN) – Attorney General Ken Paxton released a statement Sunday on the Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage ruling stating that county clerks, justices of the peace, judges and their employees may object to issuing same-sex marriage licences due to their religious beliefs.

Paxton adds that while officials are allowed to choose not to issue same-sex marriage licenses, they may face litigation and/or a fine for doing so.

“In the Attorney General’s opinion my office issued in response to Lt. Governor Patrick’s request for guidance, we find that although it fabricated a new constitutional right in 2015, the Supreme Court did not diminish, overrule, or call into question the First Amendment rights to free exercise of religion that formed the first freedom in the Bill of Rights in 1791. This newly invented federal constitutional right to same-sex marriage should peaceably coexist alongside longstanding constitutional and statutory rights, including the rights to free exercise of religion and speech,” said Paxton in his statement.

You can view Paxton’s full statement.

Sen. Jose Rodriguez, D-El Paso released a statement calling Paxton’s statement irresponsible.

“Public officials, from county clerks to the Attorney General to the Governor, do not get to choose what laws the y will follow and which ones they will not. If they can’t follow the law, including upholding the U.S. constitution in its entirety, and fulfill all of their official duties, then they should resign from elected office,” said Sen. Rodriguez in his statement.

You can view Sen. Jose Rodriguez’s full statement here.

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Gay marriage has been legal in Indiana for just over a year but, until now, there was the threat that a Supreme Court ruling could change that.

And that’s why there was a celebration in Indiana Friday.

Several dozen people gathered within earshot of the governor’s office in the Statehouse rotunda less than two hours after the ruling came down.

“Governor Pence, guess who gets to get married,” organizer Karen Celestino Horseman told the crowd.

It was an emotional rally.

“I can’t say it’s unbelievable because we knew we would get here eventually,” said Satuel Cole. “We just didn’t know when.”

Some of them, including Pam Lee, sued for for right to get married in Indiana.

“This ruling speaks to equality,” Lee told the crowd. “It speaks to fairness, it speaks to freedom and, again, it speaks to love.”

Others just wanted to celebrate.

“It means everything,” said Dana Black. “It means my wife and I, who are contributors in an economic way to our society, now have the ability to be respected in all 50 states.”

“Now Hoosiers know that they can remain married,” said Katie Blair, “without the threat of it being taken away. It’s ours.”

And just in case there were doubts, Celestino Horseman, a lawyer, read from the Supreme Court ruling.

“No union is more profound than marriage,” she read, “for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family.”

The law of the land just shifted.

Governor Mike Pence is on the other side of this argument and he was slow to react.

He issued a statement four hours after the ruling came out expressing disappointment but, he said, his administration will respect the law.

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Friday was a historic day in the United States and state leaders in Indiana spoke out about the same-sex marriage ruling by the Supreme Court.

Below is a collection of statements from state leaders, organizations and politicians about SCOTUS’ decision to allow same-sex couples to marry in all 50 states.

John Zody, Chairman of the Indiana Democratic Party:

“In Indiana, we believe a good government is one that solves today’s problems and improves the overall well-being of hardworking families. Today’s ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court to allow full marriage equality nationwide reaffirms this principle. The hard work and efforts of so many in Indiana is now not only vindicated, but also lets same-sex couples know they are on equal footing to their peers. While we still have more work to do to ensure every single Hoosier is protected under our civil rights statutes in Indiana, today’s ruling shows that we’re one step closer to equality under the law. That is a freedom we should all be proud of.”

Freedom Indiana campaign manager Katie Blair:

“So many families have waited so long for this day that it hardly seems real, but the Court made clear today that all Americans should have the freedom to marry the person they love.

“Freedom Indiana got its start two years ago fighting a proposed constitutional amendment to outlaw the very thing the Court today recognized as “a fundamental right inherent in the liberty of the person.” Hoosier couples won the freedom to marry last June. And now same-sex marriage is the law of the land in the United States.

“As we celebrate this victory for families across our nation, we must not forget that our work here is not done. In Indiana, you can still be fired, denied housing or turned away for service because you are gay. Without statewide nondiscrimination protections in place, LGBT Hoosiers have to seek out inclusive communities. They should feel welcome everywhere, and we’ll continue our fight to update state civil rights laws to include sexual orientation and gender identity.

“Just as all Americans should have the freedom to marry, we want to make sure all Hoosiers have the freedom to live, work and play in our state with no fear of discrimination.”

U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly:

“I welcome today’s Supreme Court ruling that all Americans are now free to marry whom they love. We are a stronger state in Indiana and a stronger country when we support inclusion, respect, and equality for all Americans.”

Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller:

“We urge all Hoosiers whether they agree or disagree with the outcome to show civility toward each other and show respect for the Supreme Court’s authority and the judicial system. After two years of legal uncertainty, state governments at last have a final ruling from the Supreme Court, and the public interest in this case underscores the central role and importance of the institution of marriage in our society.”

ACLU of Indiana legal director Ken Falk:

“This is a marvelous day for the Constitution, for Indiana, and for marriage. The Supreme Court has recognized what we have experienced in Indiana for a year – the fundamental right of marriage includes all loving couples, whether opposite-sex or same-sex. The institution of marriage is of supreme importance in our society, and allowing same-sex couples to enter into it will do nothing but strengthen the institution and society itself.”

ACLU of Indiana executive director Jane Henegar:

“This is a great day for equality and a wonderful affirmation of the importance of marriage in our society. But in Indiana, we have more work to do. We must continue our efforts to ensure that our state laws are brought into the 21st century, so that no one is ever fired, or denied housing, or denied public accommodations on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Statewide protections for LGBT people will make sure we are all treated fairly and will send the message that Indiana truly welcomes all.”

Indy Pride:

History has been made!! Just moments ago The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in favor of Same-Sex Marriage in the landmark case Obergefell v. Hodges. Marriage Equality is now here in all 50 States!

Sen. Dan Coats, R-Indiana:

Decisions of faith are the most personal and precious we make in this lifetime. Guided by my Christian faith, I believe that marriage is a solemn covenant made between a man and a woman before God. I also believe we should live our lives rooted in love and respect for our neighbors, regardless of their personal decisions or religious convictions.

It is my long-held opinion that this deeply personal issue – which divides many families and friends – should be decided by the voters in each state. Now that the Supreme Court has imposed its own definition of marriage, we must ensure that religious freedom is protected across America. Established in our nation’s founding days and sustained for over 200 years, religious liberty is at the very core of our system of government and our way of life. All people of all faiths must have the right to exercise their faith within the bounds of our justice system.

Rep. Luke Messer:

My faith informs my traditional view of marriage. It also teaches me that we are called to treat everyone with love and respect. Unfortunately, today’s Supreme Court decision is yet another that ignores the religious beliefs and convictions of millions of Americans. It is now more important than ever that we protect religious freedom, allow individuals to follow their conscience and prevent unfair discrimination.

Congressman Andre Carson:

Today’s Supreme Court decision is another step forward to ensure fairness and equality for all. Today we recognized what we already know, all American families are equal in every way. Today’s ruling is a critical step in ensuring that no one in this country suffers discrimination because of their race, ethnicity, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity. I applaud the court’s decision and send my sincerest congratulations to the couples around the country who have waited so long to gain this important right.

In a landmark 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned bans on same-sex marriage. Civil rights activists are celebrating the victory in the courts.

Click here to see related photos.

WASHINGTON (MEDIA GENERAL) – By a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court has reversed the sixth circuit’s decision and ends bans against same-sex marriage. Same-sex marriage now is legal in all 50 states.

Prior to the ruling, same-sex marriage still was illegal in 13 states.

Actions of state and local official will determine how quickly gay couples can marry, though many have prepared for this ruling, setting up protocols to handle a surge of new marriage applicants.

“What can happen and should happen is that states should start issuing marriage licenses almost immediately,” James Esseks, director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s LGBT and AIDS Project, told Vox Media. “Once the Supreme Court rules, it’s the law of the land.”

Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the opinion on the ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, which was joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Stephen Breyer. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia and Samuel Alito each wrote dissents.

Kennedy said in his opinion: “The Constitution promises liberty to all within its reach, a liberty that includes certain specific rights that allow persons, within a lawful real, to define and express their identity. … The ancient origins of marriage confirm its centrality, but it has not stood in isolation from developments in law and society. The history of marriage is one of both continuity and change. That institution – even as confined to opposite-sex relations – has evolved over time.”

President Obama tweeted shortly after the ruling:

Read the full text from the Supreme Court here:

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) – Same-sex couples in Indiana who’ve flocked to the altar since courts threw out the state’s ban on gay marriage last year worry that a pending U.S. Supreme Court ruling could lead to legal limbo.

The high court is expected to rule by the end of the month on whether states can limit marriage to heterosexual couples. Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee are asking the court to uphold bans on same-sex marriage and allow the political process, not the courts, to handle major societal changes. But the decision would have a wide-reaching impact, especially in states like Indiana, which unsuccessfully fought to keep their bans.

After U.S. District Judge Richard Young ruled last June that Indiana’s ban on same-sex marriage violated the U.S. Constitution’s equal-protection clause, gay couples began to get married. The exact number isn’t known because until January, applicants for marriage licenses filled out a form at their county clerk’s office that featured two lines: “bride’s name” and “groom’s name.”

The Indiana Department of Health reports that 1,147 marriage licenses were issued to same-sex couples from Jan. 1 to June 15 of this year. The current system for marriage licenses uses an online application form that requires each applicant to enter their name and check “male” or “female,” according to the South Bend Tribune ( ).

Support for gay marriage is rising across the country, with a Pew Research Center poll released this month showing 57 percent of Americans now favor allowing it and 39 percent oppose it. That’s a sharp swing from five years ago, when more Americans opposed same-sex marriage than supported it. The poll also showed that 72 percent of respondents said legal recognition of gay marriage is “inevitable.”

Even so, the Supreme Court’s pending decision has couples like Jennifer Weber and Arielle Schmitt of South Bend nervous. The couple had been engaged for about 18 months and thought they might have to go to Illinois to be married legally. But the court ruling allowed them to be married in Indiana on March 28.

Weber likens the debate over same-sex marriage to objections in the past about extending rights to blacks and women.

“I feel like we should have the same rights as any other couple that loves each other and wants to be together,” she said.

Schmitt said she hopes the Supreme Court will decide the issue once and for all.

“We’re always worried about it,” Schmitt said. “If it continues to go back and forth, it’s just going to leave couples in limbo.”

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) – Same-sex couples in Indiana are watching closely for the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in a gay-marriage case that some fear could cause legal chaos here.

The high court is expected to rule by the end of the month on whether states can limit marriage to heterosexual couples. The case from Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee asks the court to uphold bans on same-sex marriage and allow the political process to handle major societal changes instead of the courts.

The ruling could have wide-reaching impact, especially in states like Indiana that unsuccessfully fought to keep their bans on same-sex marriage.

The South Bend Tribune reports more than 1,100 Indiana same-sex couples have obtained marriage licenses this year following court 2014 court rulings that struck down the state’s gay-marriage ban.

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — 19 men and 12 women whose same-sex marriage cases from Ohio and Kentucky, plus Michigan and Tennessee, will be argued at the Supreme Court on April 28.

Click here to view the photos.