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Indianapolis chamber joins gay marriage ban fight

INDIANAPOLIS -- Efforts to defeat an upcoming bid by Indiana lawmakers to add a gay marriage ban to the state constitution received a major boost Tuesday when the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce said it will oppose the ban.

The Indianapolis chamber said its board of directors voted Tuesday to adopt a position to work with "other business, faith and community organizations to defeat (the ban) at the Statehouse and, if necessary, to participate in any voter referendum on the issue."

"The Indy Chamber is in the business of strengthening our economy and attracting top talent to our region," board Chairman John Thompson said in a statement. "The proposed marriage amendment does nothing to help show the nation that Indiana is a place that welcomes all, not just some, and we must be mindful of how actions such as this will impact our competitiveness on a national and global level."

While the Indianapolis Chamber represents only the central Indiana business community, it is one of several large business interests that have come out against the proposed constitutional ban, including the state's largest companies, Columbus-based engine manufacturer Cummins Inc. and Indianapolis drug maker Eli Lilly and Co. The companies the Indianapolis chamber are backing Freedom Indiana, a bipartisan coalition that is fighting the proposed ban.

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