A federal judge said Friday that he'll
order Ohio officials to recognize the out-of-state marriages of gay
and lesbian couples.
U.S. District Judge Timothy Black heard
arguments Friday in a lawsuit brought by four gay couples, three of
which are lesbian, asking him to force Ohio to recognize their
marriages on birth certificates.
Al Gerhardstein of Cincinnati, who is
representing the couples, amended his request to ask Black to strike
down Ohio's 2004 voter-approved constitutional amendment prohibiting
the state from recognizing any union other than a heterosexual
Black said Friday he would declare the
ban unconstitutional, Cincinnati
NPR affiliate WVXU reported.
Gerhardstein explained that he had only
asked Black to recognize marriages from states which allow gay
couples to marry.
Black said he would issue his ruling on
or before Monday, April 14.
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine told
WVXU that he would appeal the ruling to the Sixth Circuit Court of
Appeals in Cincinnati.
“We felt based on his preliminary
rulings that something like this would happen; and, that's fine, we
will take it up to the Sixth Circuit,” said DeWine, a Republican.
One woman in each of three plaintiff
couples from the lawsuit is pregnant through artificial insemination
and expected to deliver in June. The fourth couple, two men who live
in New York, adopted a boy last year who was born in Ohio. Their
original complaint asked for Ohio to list both parents on their
children's birth certificates.
All four states under the Sixth
Circuit's jurisdiction – Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee –
have appealed or are planning to appeal similar rulings to the