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New England Patriots Join Supreme Court Briefs Supporting Gay Marriage

BOSTON (CBS/AP) — The New England Patriots have joined thousands of business and organizations filing legal briefs at the Supreme Court in support of gay marriage.

Cases from Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee on the legalization of same-sex marriage will be argued before the nation's highest court on April 28, and a decision is expected by early summer.

The Super Bowl champs joined the World Series champion San Francisco Giants, as well as other businesses, religious groups, advocacy organizations and politicians in filing legal briefs at the Supreme Court in support of gay marriage.

Supreme Court
The U.S. Supreme Court. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Roughly six dozen briefs backing pro-gay rights plaintiffs in the four states are expected by Friday's deadline. Included is a "people's brief" filed by the Human Rights Campaign with the signatures of 207,551 people.

The Patriots, Giants and Tampa Bay Rays are part of a brief from hundreds of U.S. businesses.

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey is also filing a brief Friday.

Maura Healey
Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey. (Photo by Kris Connor/Getty Images for EMILY's List)

She argues the Constitution bars discrimination against gay marriage and says only the Supreme Court can truly settle the issue.

Healey is the nation's first openly gay attorney general.

Gov. Charlie Baker and Healey are among those urging the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down remaining state bans against gay marriage.

Baker was the only sitting governor among a group of more than 300 prominent Republicans who submitted a brief Friday.

The high court will hear arguments on the case April 28.

Noting he has a brother who is gay and married, Baker said he has come to believe there is no moral or legal justification for prohibiting same-sex couples in any state from marrying.

Massachusetts was the first U.S. state to legalize gay marriage.

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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