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Originally published Friday, March 15, 2013 at 9:14 AM

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Tribal same-sex bill OK'd, male couple marries

The chairman of a northern Michigan Indian tribe has presided over the marriage of two men after signing a bill authorizing same-sex marriage

Associated Press

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HARBOR SPRINGS, Mich. —

The chairman of a northern Michigan Indian tribe has presided over the marriage of two men after signing a bill authorizing same-sex marriage

The tribal council of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians approved the measure March 3 on a 5-4 vote.

Chairman Dexter McNamara signed the bill Friday morning at the tribal government building in Harbor Springs. Afterward, trial member Tim LaCroix (La-CROY) and longtime partner Gene Barfield exchanged vows.

At least two other U.S. Indian tribes recognize gay marriage.

Michigan voters approved a ban on bay marriage in 2004, although federally recognized American Indian tribes are self-governing and not bound by state law. A spokesman for Attorney General Bill Schuette (SHOO-tee) says Michigan would not recognize the validity of same-sex marriages conducted by tribes.

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