North Carolina and Utah Laws Allow Clerks to Refuse Same-Sex Marriages

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While Rowan County, Kentucky, clerk Kim Davis is in jail for refusing to issue same-sex marriage licenses, more than 30 magistrates in North Carolina have legally refused to perform weddings for gay couples.

As CBN reports, almost immediately after the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage nationwide, the North Carolina legislature passed a law allowing state officials to opt out of performing all marriages.

The law in North Carolina was specifically written for court officials with religious objections to gay marriage. Its sponsor, Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger said, “It’s keeping folks from having to choose between their job and their religious beliefs.”

“I think that’s important,” he added. “I think the law is working very well.”

Similarly, in Utah, Gov. Gary Herbert (R) signed a bill in March allowing state officials to refuse to marry any couples, including same-sex couples, for religious reasons.

As the Associated Press reported, the law requires a county clerk’s office to appoint someone else to marry all couples if a clerk opts out of performing a marriage.


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