N. Carolina’s religious-exemption gay marriage bill now law

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A measure allowing some court officials to refuse to perform gay marriage responsibilities because of their religious beliefs has become law in North Carolina.

The North Carolina House voted Thursday to override a veto of the measure that Republican Gov. Pat McCrory had earlier vetoed. The Senate voted to do the same a week ago.

Thursday’s House vote was just over the three-fifths majority needed.

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

McCrory had said no one who takes a government oath should be allowed to avoid performing duties required by that oath.

Before North Carolina, only Utah had passed such a similar exemption, earlier this year.

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