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North Carolina Senate overrides governor’s veto of gay marriage opt-out bill

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A measure that would allow some public officials in North Carolina to opt out of performing gay marriages moved closer to becoming law on Monday, when lawmakers voted to override Republican Governor Pat McCrory’s veto of the bill.

The Republican-led state Senate reached the three-fifths majority needed to override McCrory’s veto in a 32-16 vote. The legislation now goes back to the Republican-controlled state House of Representatives, which passed it in February by a margin wide enough to override the veto.

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The bill allows magistrates and other officials to refuse to perform marriages or issue marriage certificates by citing a “sincerely held religious objection.” Once they have asked to opt out in writing, magistrates would be barred from performing any marriage, gay or heterosexual, for six months.

Senate leader Phil Berger said the bill struck a balance between the legal ruling that allowed same-sex marriages to begin in the state last year and the rights of state employees to exercise their religion.

“If the federal courts say they will be performed, they will be performed,” Berger said before Monday’s vote. “But if someone takes a job, they don’t park their First Amendment rights at the door. They are entitled to exercise those rights.”

Democrats said the measure would likely delay marriages for gay couples, making the state vulnerable to lawsuits claiming unfair treatment.

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“We want to be on the right side of history, not creating loopholes for unlawful discrimination,” Democratic Senator Floyd McKissick said.

Announcing his veto last week, McCrory said public officials who swore to defend the Constitution and perform their duties of office should not be exempt from upholding their oath.

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Similar bills were filed in several states this year, although none has become law yet, the American Civil Liberties Union said.

Gay marriage is legal in 37 states and Washington, D.C. The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to decide by the end of June whether same-sex marriage should be legal nationwide.

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… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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Trump furious with Steve King for crippling his re-election chances in Iowa: CNN’s April Ryan

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Sitting in with CNN's Victor Blackwell on Sunday morning, contributor April Ryan relayed that Rep. Steve King (R-IA) is in big trouble not only with his party over his latest comments about rape and incest, but that Donald Trump is aggravated with him too because he may impact the president's chances in Iowa in the 2020 election.

With King reeling from the fallout from his own comments made during an appearance earlier in the week, Ryan said that his days may be numbered because senior Republicans want him gone too.

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Trump White House tried to stop immigrant kids from attending public schools

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Led by President Donald Trump's xenophobic top adviser Stephen Miller, the White House reportedly spent months attempting to devise a way to stop undocumented immigrant children from attending public schools in the United States.

According to Bloomberg, which first reported on the effort on Saturday, top Trump aides sought to hand states the "power to block undocumented immigrant children from enrolling in public schools."

"Using children like this as political pawns is another low point for the Trump administration."—Randi Weingarten, American Federation of Teachers

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Psychoanalyst Justin Frank on why Trump ‘hates reality’ and must be ‘quarantined’

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Donald Trump is a living, breathing national emergency. Our president has repeatedly encouraged violence against his perceived enemies — and at least some of his supporters are following his lead. These are not isolated incidents. There are dozens of court cases where Donald Trump has been cited for "inspiring" acts of violence and other crimes. There are also the most odious examples such as the recent white supremacist terror attack in El Paso in which the alleged mass murderer wrote an online "manifesto" that almost verbatim channeled Trump's threatening rhetoric towards nonwhite people.

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