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Florida attorney general asks Supreme Court to block gay marriages

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi has filed an emergency petition with the U.S. Supreme Court to try to keep the state's gay marriage ban in place past Jan. 5.

Bondi this week filed a request with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, who oversees emergency appeals from Florida, Alabama and Georgia.

A federal appeals court in Atlanta refused earlier this month to extend past Jan. 5 a hold on a ruling that declared Florida's ban on gay marriage unconstitutional. The decision possibly brings same-sex weddings one step closer to reality in the state.

But Bondi's office said that the state's ban needs to stay in place to avoid confusion while it appeals the ruling. U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle in August ruled the voter approved ban on gay marriage was unconstitutional.

The conservative tea party Republican has said it is her duty to protect the state amendment barring gay couples from marrying in the Sunshine State. She has said that allowing gay couples to marry in the state would "impose significant public harm."

Bondi has been married three times and divorced twice.

In a legal defense of the ban on same-sex marriage earlier this year, the attorney general said, "Florida’s marriage laws have a close, direct, and rational relationship to society’s legitimate interest in increasing the likelihood that children will be born to and raised by the mothers and fathers who produced them in stable and enduring family units."

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