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North Carolina's bill to outlaw gay marriage y marriage bill "will not be heard"

2017-04-13
A bill that would make same-sex marriage illegal in North Carolina has fallen at the first hurdle. Earlier this week, Republican lawmakers introduced the the ‘Uphold Historical Marriage Act’, in order to change the state’s constitution and declare that “Marriages between persons of the same gender not valid.” The text of the bill quoted a bible verse in an attempt to justify the reversal of the supreme court decision: “the decree of Almighty God that ‘a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. (Genesis 2:24, ESV)’” However, Tim Moore, Speaker of the House for the North Carolina House of Representatives, confirmed yesterday that the bill would not be going any further: “There are strong constitutional concerns with this legislation given that the U.S. Supreme Court has firmly ruled on the issue, therefore House Bill 780 will be referred to the House Rules Committee and will not be heard” Marriage equality came to all 50 US states in June 2015 after a supreme court ruling the Obergefell v. Hodges case. The Court determined that the U.S. Constitution does require states to allow same-sex marriages, striking down existing bans in the 14 states that had yet to embrace marriage equality. In response to the news of the bill being proposed, Chuck McGrady, a Republican in the North Carolina legislature, tweeted that a representative can propose any bill, even a "stupid one". He referenced a bill put to the House in 2011 that would give North Carolina its own currency. The ‘Uphold Historical Marriage Act' was sponsored by Republican lawmakers Larry Pittman, Michael Speciale and Carl Ford. Last month marked the one-year anniversary of North Carolina’s HB2 being signed into law. The bill, which bars transgender people from using the bathroom of the gender with which they identify, has proven controversial, with several celebrities and businesses boycotting the state. Research by economists in North Carolina has previously shown that its anti-LGBT legislation has cost the state $560m (£461m).