NC Legislature returns for gay marriage amendment

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    RALEIGH, NC (AP) — Social conservatives wanting for years for
    legislators to act on a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex
    marriage in North Carolina are heading to Raleigh, urging them to
    vote this week.

    Several groups that support the ban planned a rally Monday
    morning near the Legislative Building before lawmakers reconvened
    at midday. Legislative leaders say they’re prepared to consider a
    bill setting up a statewide constitutional referendum for 2012.

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    Amendment opponents also planned candlelight vigils in several
    cities Monday night and a Raleigh rally on Tuesday. They say the
    amendment is unnecessary, a political ploy by Republicans and
    discriminates against gays and lesbians.

    GOP legislators now in charge of the Legislature say it’s time
    for citizens to decide on the issue after it was quashed during
    years of Democratic rule.

    (Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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