COLUMBIA (AP) — The top Democrat in the South Carolina House said same-sex couples who are legally married in other states should be able to jointly file their state income taxes.


A bill filed Wednesday by House Minority Leader Todd Rutherford would mean the couples wouldn’t have to file separate tax returns.


The Columbia Democrat said the requirement to file excess paperwork is not only discriminatory, but a waste of time and money.


Same-sex marriages are legal in 17 states.


In 2006, South Carolina voters approved amending the constitution to define marriage as between one man and one woman. The definition was already in state law, but legislators argued the change was needed to bar recognition of same-sex unions from other states.


Rutherford filed separate legislation Wednesday aimed at deleting that amendment.


Bill allows gays to file joint tax returns