- Associated Press - Monday, June 20, 2016

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - A federal judge has agreed to further consolidate lawsuits seeking to defend a North Carolina law that limits protections for the LGBT community.

Judge Terrence Boyle on Monday allowed a group called North Carolinians for Privacy to combine their lawsuit with cases brought by state leaders. That means legal efforts that started as three separate lawsuits will be heard as one case.

Gov. Pat McCrory and state legislative leaders have argued in court that the federal government overreached when it declared the state law was discriminatory.

Two other cases challenging the law are being heard in a separate federal court. Those cases were filed by the Department of Justice and the American Civil Liberties Union.

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