Leno seeks to affirm religious freedom

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By Nima Maghame

As supporters and opponents of same-sex marriage await closing arguments and a verdict in the federal lawsuit challenging Prop. 8’s legality, California State Senator Mark Leno has introduced a new bill that protects clergy who don’t want to perform marriage ceremonies that conflict with their beliefs.

“We so often heard from members of clergy that if Prop. 8 doesn't pass, they had concern that they would be forced to marry against their beliefs and scared they would lose their tax-exemption,” Leno told the Guardian. So he’s decided to promote a bill that would remove that argument from the anti-gay marriage arsenal.