Senator declares Kansas anti-gay marriage bill dead
Associated Press - February 18, 2014 7:23 pm
The special election for the congressional seat formerly held by new CIA Director Mike Pompeo has added new urgency to pending court decisions in multiple federal lawsuits challenging restrictive voter registration requirements in Kansas.
The chairman of the Kansas Senate Judiciary Committee says the panel won’t consider a House-passed bill to protect people who refuse for religious reasons to provide goods and services to gay couples.
Sen. Jeff King said Tuesday the legislation is dead.
The bill bars government sanctions or anti-discrimination lawsuits against individuals, groups and businesses that cite religious beliefs in refusing to provide goods, services, accommodations or employment benefits to gay couples.
Supporters said the bill would protect Kansans from being forced to participate in gay weddings if the federal courts struck down the state’s ban on same-sex unions. The House passed it last week.
Senate leaders said the bill couldn’t pass their chamber amid criticism that it was discriminatory.
King said his panel still will have hearings on religious liberty issues.