TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida law will specify that churches can't be forced to marry same-sex couples if Gov. Rick Scott signs a bill now headed to his desk.
The Senate passed the bill 23-15 on Thursday. Democrats argued that the bill wasn't necessary, saying the state and federal constitutions already ensure churches can marry or not marry anyone they want.
Republican Sen. Aaron Bean said his bill is a result of the U.S. Supreme Court decision last year that said same-sex marriage is legal. He said the rule turned the world upside down among people who consider marriage a sacred institution between a man and a woman.
He said he hopes the bill is never needed.
The House passed the bill Wednesday. The law will take effect July 1 if Scott signs it.