Senate votes to take Alabama out of marriage business


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MONTGOMERY, Ala. — The Alabama Senate has approved a bill that would do away with marriage licenses and the requirement for people to go through a wedding ceremony.

The bill comes as a few Alabama probate judges refuse to issue marriage licenses to anyone so they do not have to give them to gay couples.

Senators on Tuesday voted 19-1 for the bill, which moves to the House of Representatives. Instead of a license issued by probate judge, couples would sign and submit a form. Couples would no longer need a wedding ceremony.

Sen. Greg Albritton said his bill “truly separates the church and the state.”

Sen. Phil Williams, the lone no vote, said he feared the change would water down the meaning of marriage.

Albritton has proposed the bill for four years.

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