Law al­lows gay mar­riage ex­emp­tion

Los Angeles Times - - THE NATION -

A mea­sure al­low­ing some court of­fi­cials to refuse to per­form gay mar­riage re­spon­si­bil­i­ties be­cause of their re­li­gious be­liefs be­came law in North Carolina, but op­po­nents said lit­i­ga­tion chal­leng­ing the new statute was likely to come soon.

The state House voted to over­ride Repub­li­can Gov. Pat McCrory’s veto of the bill, mak­ing the law ef­fec­tive im­me­di­ately. The Se­nate voted to over­ride last week.

North Carolina be­comes the sec­ond state with such an ex­emp­tion for court of­fi­cials. Utah passed a sim­i­lar one this year.

The law means some work­ers in reg­is­ter of deeds of­fices who as­sem­ble li­censes and mag­is­trates to sol­em­nize civil mar­riages can de­cide to stop per­form­ing all mar­riages if they hold a “sin­cerely held re­li­gious ob­jec­tion.”

The law “protects sin­cerely held re­li­gious be­liefs while also en­sur­ing that mag­is­trates are avail­able in all ju­ris­dic­tions to per­form law­ful mar­riages,” House Speaker Tim Moore said in a state­ment.

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