Conservative Lawyers Prepare to Defend Same-Sex Marriage Opponents

Dr. Sid Hall, Senior Pastor at Trinity United Methodist Church wears a rainbow pin on his lapel during HRS press conference at Texas Capitol June 29, 2015
Dr. Sid Hall, Senior Pastor at Trinity United Methodist Church wears a rainbow pin on his lapel during HRS press conference at Texas Capitol June 29, 2015

With Republican leaders vowing to protect the religious freedom of government officials who refuse to recognize same-sex marriages, here's a look at the legal arguments conservative attorneys plan to use to defend those officials in court. 

The Brief: July 7, 2015

The Texas Democratic state convention on June 8, 2012
The Texas Democratic state convention on June 8, 2012

State Democrats' "Texas Two-Step" method of allocating delegates to the presidential nominating convention is over after nearly 40 years, raising the importance of the state's primary for presidential candidates.

The Brief: July 6, 2015

Pamela Holwerds holds up her marriage license following the ceremony that married over 40 same-sex couples on the south lawn of the Texas State Capitol in Austin on July 4, 2015. (Tamir Kalifa for The Texas Tribune)
Pamela Holwerds holds up her marriage license following the ceremony that married over 40 same-sex couples on the south lawn of the Texas State Capitol in Austin on July 4, 2015. (Tamir Kalifa for The Texas Tribune)

With same-sex marriage now legalized, conservative lawyers are beginning to prepare defenses for government employees who refuse to marry same-sex couples due to their religious objections.

Slideshow: Sworn on the 4th of July

Over 40 same-sex couples were married on Independence Day at the Texas state Capitol in what organizers billed as a "Big Gay Wedding" in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that bans on such unions are unconstitutional.

Texas Hopes to Attract More Mental Health Care Workers

Mental health rally at the Texas Capitol organized by NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, on Feb. 28, 2013.
Mental health rally at the Texas Capitol organized by NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, on Feb. 28, 2013.

A program created this year will help pay mental health professionals’ student loans if they practice in a medically needy area. The program seeks to alleviate the state’s shortage of mental health professionals, which watchdogs are calling a "public health emergency."