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D.C. Marriage Bill Debated


About 100 witnesses testified on Monday before a D.C. city council committee on legislation that would legalize same-sex marriage in the nation's capital.

Attendees examined the measure's language and proposed changes to it, such as replacing the terms "bride" and "groom" on marriage licenses with "spouse," reports the Associated Press.

Some religious organizations voiced some concerns about same-sex marriage, saying they want to ensure that they are not forced to rent their space for ceremonies uniting gay couples.

The measure currently states that groups will not have to rent their space for same-sex ceremonies unless they make the space available to the general public.

The bill, introduced earlier in October, already has the support of 11 of 13 council members.

The bill would expand current law, which recognizes same-sex marriages performed in other jurisdictions, to allow such marriages to be performed in the District of Columbia.

A second council hearing is scheduled for November 2.

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