The North Carolina state Senate voted yesterday to allow government officials to refuse to perform same-sex marriages.
The ban on same-sex marriages was struck down last year, but some magistrates threatened to resign instead of carry them out. With the passing of this vote, magistrates can opt-out of performing marriages that they are opposed to due to “sincerely held religious objection”. It also applies to those who issue marriage licenses and certificates.
The bill makes provisions to ensure couples are not denied the right to marry. It does not specifically mention same-sex couples, referring to any marriage government officials may potentially object. Campaigners point that this may mean magistrates objecting to carrying mixed-race marriages.