BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) – A House committee has narrowly agreed to advance a bill that would repeal an unconstitutional state law prohibiting intercourse between two people of the same sex.
The criminal justice committee voted 9-6 Wednesday for the measure by Baton Rouge Rep. Patricia Smith, over the objections of conservative and religious groups.
Smith said the bill was about fairness.
It would remove consensual sex between people of the same gender from the definition of crimes against nature. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled a decade ago that a similar law in Texas violated the 14th amendment.
Opponents argued Smith's bill would harm public safety, lead to more sexual assault and increase sexually transmitted diseases.
The next stop for Smith's proposal is the House floor.
House Bill 12 can be found at http://www.legis.la.gov