2016 Marriage Legislation

These bills would allow or even require government employees, for-profit business, or government contractors and grantees to discriminate against same-sex couples who are married or seeking to marry. Find out more about this issue on our marriage page.

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Government Employee: These bills would allow government employees and officials to withhold marriage licenses, refuse to solemnize weddings, or otherwise block recognition of some or all marriages. Check out our talking points here.

 

First Amendment Defense Acts: Also known as FADAs, these are based on a federal bill that would allow private businesses, federal contractors and grantees, and even government employees to discriminate against same-sex couples, unmarried couples, people who have remarried, single mothers, those who have had sex outside of marriage, and others. Some state bills are narrower or broader than the federal FADA; however, all of these bills seek to sanction discrimination, allowing individuals and entities to ignore laws that conflict with their religious beliefs about marriage.  Check out our FADA talking points here.

 

Wedding Services: These bills would allow private businesses and individuals to refuse to provide wedding services or products to same-sex couples or other couples.

 

Penalties for Recognizing Marriage: These bills would require firing of or pay cuts for government officials and employees who follow the Constitution and recognize the marriages of same-sex couples.

 

Pastor Protection Acts: Generally, these bills prohibit the state from requiring clergy and religious institutions to perform marriages for same-sex or other couples if such marriages conflict with their religious beliefs. Some Pastor Protection Acts, however, are more expansive and would also allow commercial entities owned or run by religious organizations to refuse to provide any wedding related services to couples whose marriage conflicts with their religious beliefs. See more about clergy and marriage equality here.

 

Nullification of Marriage Equality: These bills would defy the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Constitution by declaring that the state will recognize only marriages between one man and one woman.

 

Changing The State's Role In Marriage: These bills would eliminate or reduce the state’s role in licensing or solemnizing marriages.