Politics

Kentucky’s state House has passed a bill that would create one marriage license form for both gay and straight couples in an effort to defuse controversy over the licensing of gay marriages.

The measure passed the Democratic-led House today has the blessing of Republican Gov. Matt Bevin. Under the House version, a marriage license applicant would have the option of checking “bride,” ”groom” or “spouse” beside their name.

The bill goes back to the Republican-led state Senate, which approved a different version calling for separate forms for gay and straight couples.

Michael Aldridge, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky, said the bill would ensure equal access to all couples.

“The bill lifts the cloud of uncertainty hanging over marriage licensing in Kentucky created, in part, when Gov. Bevin issued an executive order making changes to the form late last year,” he said. “Now everyone, regardless of how they identify, will soon be able to access the same marriage license form in the commonwealth.”

The proposals are a response to the controversy last year surrounding Kim Davis, a Kentucky county clerk who spent five days in jail for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.