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Speaking at a press conference this week in Cheyenne, Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead said he believes the Legislature needs to look at revising existing state law that defines marriage as existing only between one man and one woman in response to the Supreme Court ruling.
“I think based on that ruling, the Legislature will have an opportunity to say, ‘OK, this is the court’s ruling: same-sex marriage is not only allowed, but required. And how do we go forward as a state?” he said.
Mead, a Republican, had gone to court to defend Wyoming’s marriage law last year against a challenge from several same-sex couples. He said this week that, as the Legislature considers changes to the state’s marriage law, it also needs to consider the importance of protecting religious rights and liberties.
Jeran Artery of Cheyenne is chairman of Wyoming Equality, a group that advocates for equal rights for gay, lesbian and transgendered people. With the Supreme Court ruling on marriage accomplished, he said his group will continue pushing for a statewide anti-discrimination law.
“The marriage issue has been settled, and we don’t need to revisit that,” Artery said Thursday. “And I know it’s a tough pill to swallow for some people who have those deeply held religious convictions. And I respect that.”
]ad\Artery said it’s already plain under the U.S. Constitution that religious clergy who don’t want to preside over marriages for same-sex couples don’t have to do so.
“So, we don’t need these religious exemption bills, these religious freedom bills,” Artery said. “They always sound good. The ‘Freedom of Religion Act,’ who wouldn’t love that? But we already have it in this country.”
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