By JONATHAN MATTISEAssociated Press
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Tennessee's attorney general contends a law deemed discriminatory to same-sex couples in a court challenge does nothing new.
Attorney General Herbert Slatery moved to dismiss the Davidson County Chancery Court lawsuit by four married lesbian couples on behalf of their unborn children.
The law requires using the "natural and ordinary meaning" of words in state law.
The lawsuit says the law may be used to interpret gender-specific words, including "father" and "mother," literally so one parent won't be recognized and rights can be denied.
Slatery's reply says the new law codifies a longstanding rule. It says a more-specific law requiring gender-specific words to be interpreted as inclusive must be considered.
It says the lawsuit claims only theoretical fear, and the Department of Health already applies artificial-insemination law to same-sex couples.
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It happened just after 8 p.m. on Saturday.
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