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Nev. Lawmakers Pass Bill to Remove Anti-Same-Sex Marriage Amendment

Paul Boger

State lawmakers are one step closer to amending the Nevada Constitution to remove language banning same-sex marriage.

Assembly Joint Resolution 2 would remove the "one man, one woman" marriage clause from the Nevada constitution and replace it with language that would allow residents to marry regardless of sexual orientation or gender.

The measure was approved by the Senate yesterday after a 19-2 bi-partisan vote.

"The fact that we would legitimize discrimination against people based upon their gender and gender orientation, this will go a long way to rectifying that like the equivalent of women having the right to vote or the Equal Rights Amendment," says Democratic Senator Tick Segerblom of Las Vegas. "This is a major step."  

The Senate did make changes to the resolution which was passed by the Assembly in March, providing an exemption for private, religious organizations.

"The sponsors of this legislation have shown a willingness to amend this bill to include a very important religious exemption and work with members of both parties,” says Republican Senator Scott Hammond, also of Las Vegas, who previous voted against similar measures. "We don't see that enough in this chamber."

The measure will now head back to the Assembly for a final approval on changes made by the Senate. In addition, since AJR2 is a constitutional amendment, lawmakers will again have to pass the measure during the 2019 session where it will then be placed on the 2020 ballot for approval.

Paul Boger is a former reporter at KUNR Public Radio.
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