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LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Michigan lawmakers have voted to let faith-based agencies with state contracts refuse to participate in adoption referrals that violate their beliefs, over objections that the legislation would permit discrimination against gay couples.

The Republican-backed legislation was approved 26-12 Wednesday.

Supporters say the legislation codifies a state agency's existing practice for private agencies with child-placing contracts. They say agencies with religious objections to a prospective adoption would have to refer an applicant to another agency.

Opponents say the bills ignore children's best interest, legalize discrimination and could keep children from being adopted.

Republican Gov. Rick Snyder has expressed concerns that the legislation could lead to lawsuits.

The bill is now on the Governors desk. It's unclear whether he will sign it or not.