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Arizona gay marriage supporters reinforce case

DGay marriage supporters filed a supporting brief Wednesday to bolster their argument that a federal court should immediately strike down Arizona’s ban on gay marriage and clear the way for legal same-sex unions in the state.

Lawyers representing plaintiffs in one of two lawsuits challenging Arizona’s gay marriage ban said “same-sex marriages are now being performed and recognized in 30 of the 50 states. The same should finally come true in Arizona.”

In a 16-page brief, they asked a U.S. District Court judge to grant their motion for a summary judgment in the case, deny defendants’ cross-motion for summary judgment and immediately forbid enforcement of Arizona’s marriage discrimination laws.

The Arizona Attorney General’s Office, which is defending the state’s ban, is expected to file its brief in the case Thursday.

Arizona lawmakers approved a state law barring same-sex marriages in 1996. Seven years later, an Arizona appeals court upheld the constitutionality of the law. Voters in 2008 amended the Arizona Constitution to include a ban.

Seven couples who live in Arizona have challenged the state’s gay marriage ban, including some who married in other states but were unable to have their union legally recognized in Arizona.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled on Oct. 7 that gay marriage prohibitions in Nevada and Idaho violated the equal-protection rights of same-sex couples.

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