BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) The Louisiana House has overwhelmingly rejected a repeal of the state's unconstitutional anti-sodomy law.

Baton Rouge Rep. Patricia Smith, a Democrat, sought to remove consensual sex between people of the same sex from Louisiana's crimes against nature law. The U.S. Supreme Court threw out a similar Texas law a decade ago.

Lawmakers voted 66-27 against Smith's repeal bill Tuesday.

Denham Springs Rep. Valarie Hodges, a Republican, opposed the measure, saying the law protects children and upholds morality.

Opponents of Smith's proposal said it would remove minors' protection from aggravated crimes against nature. Smith said at least 12 other statutes protect minors from sexual assault.

Smith brought the bill after Baton Rouge-area police arrested gay men using the law but couldn't charge them because the district attorney said it was unenforceable.

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