Arkansas attorney general supports gay marriage, but will defend ban

By Kyle Johnson,

The Arkansas attorney general announced on Saturday that he supports gay marriage, but will still defend the state's ban.

Dustin McDaniel said that despite his personal beliefs, as the state's top lawyer it is his duty to defend Arkansas' ban on gay marriage, reports KARK-TV reports. The constitutional amendment that banned marriage equality was passed a decade ago.

According to The Associated Press, McDaniel became the first official in the state to reveal support for gay marriage while speaking at the Associated Press Managing Editors convention.

"I want to tell you I do support marriage equality and I do believe Arkansans should have the right to be equal in the eyes of the law," he said in a speech. Afterwards he spoke with AP and clarified that he felt it was "important to let people know where I stand on the matter," despite planning on defending the law.

McDaniel's remarks come just a week before a federal judge is expected to provide their decision on the state's ban, which is being challenged in court. Several state attorney generals have decided to not defend gay marriage bans in their states as judges continue to strike down laws across the country.



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