BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - The Louisiana National Guard won't process requests from same-sex couples seeking benefits, joining Texas in the refusal because of the states' bans on gay marriage.
National Guard spokesman Lt. Col. Mike Kazmierzak says Maj. Gen. Glenn Curtis, the state's adjutant general, issued the directive Wednesday.
Kazmierzak cited Louisiana's constitution, saying it doesn't recognize same-sex marriage and doesn't allow a state official to participate in an act that recognizes same-sex marriage.
Approved by lawmakers and voters in 2004, the constitution defines marriage as between a man and a woman and declares legal marriage statuses for other couples "shall not be valid or recognized."
Kazmierzak says the Louisiana National Guard isn't denying same-sex benefits. He says guard personnel can seek to file benefit requests with eight federal military installations in the state.