Senate advances bill protecting religious objections

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A proposal that supporters say would allow people with strong religious beliefs to not provide services for same-sex weddings has been approved by the Indiana Senate.

All 40 Republican senators voted in favor of the bill on Tuesday, while the 10 Democrats voted against it.

The bill would prohibit any state laws that "substantially burden" a person's ability to follow his or her religious beliefs and includes corporations and associations. Some business leaders have argued that the proposal could hurt the state's reputation and make it more difficult to attract companies.

Republicans on Monday rejected a Democratic amendment that would've prevented the measure from overriding local civil rights ordinances that go beyond state law to include sexual orientation.

The bill goes to the Indiana House for consideration.

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