Regional
6:00 am
Mon March 3, 2014

Marriage Equality Battle Pits Texas AG Against Gay Friend

Credit Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott (R)

A fight over marriage equality in Texas is pitting Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott against a gay friend who filed the lawsuit that led to the state's equality ban being struck down.

Abbott said Friday he still considers Mark Phariss a friend even though they haven's spoke in about a decade.

But Abbott, who's running for Texas governor, expressed no sympathy at possibly denying Phariss the right to marry his longtime partner.

Texas is the latest deeply conservative state to have a marriage equality ban thrown out by a federal judge.

Phariss says he and Abbott have never agreed on politics and harbors no resentment toward him. They became friends at Vanderbilt Law School in the 1980s.

Abbott says it wasn't until last year he realized Phariss was gay.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.