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Judge striking down part of gay marriage ban in Ohio

CINCINNATI (Brad Underwood) -- A federal judge says he will soon strike down part of Ohio's voter-approved ban on gay marriage.

That means the state must recognize marriages of same-sex couples who legally wed elsewhere.  Friday after the final arguments in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the marriage ban, Judge Timothy Black announced his intention to overturn the ban.  The ruling will be made official on April 14th, giving the state time to prepare an appeal.

Married same sex couples we spoke with say while it's very exciting news, the ruling is long overdue in Ohio.  Smiling together, four couples are on the front line in Ohio. Fighting for their right to be labeled equal.  Friday, Judge Timothy Black says they are,  announcing he's overturning a ban passed by voters.  The decision means couples married in states that allow same sex marriage must be recognized in Ohio.

Attorney Al Gerhardstein said, "That's death certificates, birth certificates, that's taxes, that's privilege in court, that's custody, transmitting property."
Joseph Vitale and Robert Talmas are legally married.  Their son was born in Columbus.  They live in New York and want both their names on his birth certificate.

"It's the same right any traditional couple has.  And we're both legally Cooper's parents, we're legally married and it's just a matter of changing a document to list both parents," Robert Talmas said.

Cincinnati native Brittani Henry and her wife Brittany Rodgers have a son too and another due next month.

"I just want my son to have both his parents because we both equally love, equally care for him. He is loved by both of our families," Brittani said.

Ryan Messer and his husband Jimmy Musuraca were married in New York, but live in Over-The-Rhine.  They aren't apart of this lawsuit but are well aware of whats going in and around Ohio.

"The states around us, Michigan, Kentucky, the list goes on of states where this topic has bubbled up to the courts and it's about time that our day has come here in Ohio," they tell Local 12.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine has already announced he'll appeal the declaration in the sixth district court of appeals.  The ACLU of Ohio calls the decision another step forward in the march toward equality in Ohio.

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