TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _ The Kansas House has approved a bill aimed at keeping individuals, groups and businesses from being compelled to help with same-sex weddings.
The House's 72-49 vote Wednesday sends the measure to the Senate.
Supporters describe it as a religious freedom measure. Opponents contend it will encourage discrimination against gays and lesbians.
The bill bars government sanctions when individuals, groups and businesses cite religious beliefs in refusing to recognize a marriage or civil union, or to provide goods, services, accommodations or employment benefits to a couple. Anti-discrimination lawsuits also would be barred. Individual workers and government employees also would get some protections.
The measure is a response to the possibility that the federal courts could invalidate the state constitution's ban on same-sex marriages.
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