Texas court questions right of benefits for gay spouses

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - The Texas Supreme Court has questioned whether gay spouses are legally entitled to government-subsidized workplace benefits in a unanimous decision quickly condemned by gay-rights groups.

The court on Friday overturned a lower court's decision that favored same-sex marriage benefits, ordering the issue back to trial.

Social conservatives hope the case will help them chip away at the landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling that legalized gay marriage.

Friday's decision was a major reversal for the all-Republican Texas high court that had previously refused to even consider the benefits case after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on gay marriage. The court agreed to hear it after coming under intense pressure from Gov. Greg Abbott and the state's other top Republican politicians.