News Religious Liberty

Judge: No one directly harmed by North Carolina’s law protecting religious liberty

A federal judge has indicated that plaintiffs in a lawsuit challenging a North Carolina law designed to protect religious liberty have not proven that the law causes direct harm.

U.S. District Judge Max Cogburn did not issue a ruling Monday after attorneys for the State of North Carolina asked the court to dismiss a lawsuit filed by three couples that are seeking to force magistrates to participate in same-sex marriage ceremonies. However, Judge Cogburn, who struck down North Carolina’s constitutional amendment affirming traditional marriage in 2014, did claim, “Everybody can get married. And nobody is forced to marry anybody.”

The law at the center of the legal battle was passed by the North Carolina legislature to protect magistrates and other officials from having to participate in marriage ceremonies that might violate their religious views. The Associated Press reports that nearly five percent of North Carolina’s magistrates have invoked the law for the 1st Amendment protections it provides.

Currently, North Carolina is just one of two states that has measures protecting the religious beliefs of public officials in regards to same-sex marriage.

You can find more details on the situation in North Carolina here.

Also, be sure to see which corporations have been fighting against religious protections in North Carolina here.