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Kentucky files brief with US Supreme Court arguing that gay marriage ban doesn't discriminate

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FRANKFORT, Kentucky — Gov. Steve Beshear's administration is arguing in a brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court that Kentucky's ban on gay marriage isn't discriminatory because it bars both gay and straight people from same-sex unions.

The brief argues that because Kentucky's law bars everyone from same-sex marriage, it isn't discriminatory and should be upheld.

Attorney Dan Canon, who represents six gay couples challenging Kentucky's gay marriage ban, told The Courier-Journal (http://cjky.it/1EZ2tMy) that the argument in the brief filed last week is "especially absurd."

"Kentucky is in essence saying that our clients are precluded from marriage entirely, unless they change their sexual orientation (or simply marry someone to whom they are not attracted)," he said in an email.

"It's akin to passing a law banning all Catholic churches within city limits, and then saying it's not discriminatory because you can still go to a Baptist church," he said

Beshear spokeswoman Kerri Richardson said the governor would have no comment. He has said previously he favors a decision by the Supreme Court.

Mathew Staver, who is chairman of the conservative legal group Liberty Counsel, said that same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples are not "similarly situated" by biology or history and therefore do not have equal protection under the law as defined by Supreme Court decisions.

Justices will hear arguments on April 28 on state marriage bans from Ohio, Kentucky, Michigan and Tennessee.


Information from: The Courier-Journal, http://www.courier-journal.com

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