WRAL: Court asked to revive challenge to gay-marriage recusal law

 — A federal appeals court will consider Wednesday whether three North Carolina couples have legal standing to challenge a law allowing magistrates with religious objections to refuse to perform same-sex marriages.

The couples are asking the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond to revive the lawsuit because they say the state is spending their tax dollars to accommodate magistrates' religious views. The couples — two gay and one interracial — argue those expenditures give them the right to sue, despite a district court ruling to the contrary.

The 2015 law, known as SB2, allows magistrates to recuse themselves from performing marriages "based on any sincerely held religious objections." Those who file such notices are prevented from officiating at all marriages — gay and heterosexual — for at least six months. The law also allows some court clerks to decline to issue marriage licenses.

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