AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Attorney General Greg Abbott's office is arguing that the U.S. Constitution allows Texas to ban same-sex marriage to promote the birth of children in "stable, lasting relationships."
Abbott's office filed a brief Monday with the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
U.S. District Court Judge Orlando Garcia declared the state law unconstitutional in February, but allowed Texas to keep enforcing its ban pending an appeal.
Abbott's office said Monday that the case wasn't about whether Texas should allow gay marriage, but "about the question of who decides." It said Texas voters approved the referendum by large margins and deserved to decide whether to keep it.
It also argued that Texas has an interest in promoting opposite-sex marriages and reducing "societal costs."
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