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Oregon won't defend gay-marriage ban in lawsuit

Oregon's attorney general will not defend the state's ban on gay marriage, arguing it cannot withstand a federal constitutional challenge.

Ellen Rosenblum joins fellow Democratic attorneys general in at least five other states who have pledged not to defend state bans on gay marriage.

Her decision comes less than a month after a federal judge decided to consolidate two lawsuits alleging Oregon's ban violates the U.S. Constitution.

Portland attorneys filed the first lawsuit in October, on behalf of two women who have been in a relationship for more than 30 years. The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit two months later on behalf of two same-sex couples.

Last year, Rosenblum signed on to U.S. Supreme Court briefs arguing it was unconstitutional to deny gays the right to marry.