Shifting views on PA's same-sex marriage ban

Written by The Associated Press | Jul 14, 2013 7:41 AM
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(Harrisburg) -- When a proposed ban on same-sex marriage came to the floor of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives in June 1996, Speaker Matt Ryan warned distracted lawmakers to listen because it might be controversial.

The amendment passed easily, but the commonwealth's 17-year-old ban on same-sex marriage is even more controversial now that a lawsuit filed in federal court is seeking to overturn it.

Currently, 13 states have laws supporting same-sex marriage, and a handful of lawmakers who voted for that law now belong to the Legislature's 60-member lesbian and gay rights caucus.

The Republican governor who signed the law, Tom Ridge, has also had a change of heart. In February, he signed on to a brief asking the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down California's ban on gay marriage.

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