A federal judge has denied Michigan's request to halt his preliminary injunction that preserved a Catholic adoption agency's ability to refuse to place state wards with LGBT couples.
Judge Robert Jonker in Grand Rapids declined the stay on Tuesday.
It had been sought by state Attorney General Dana Nessel and the state Department of Health and Human Services, while the case is appealed.
Jonker said state attorneys "offered nothing new" and "failed to come to grips" with the factual basis supporting an inference that Nessel engaged in "religious targeting."
Nessel has denied having hostility toward faith-based agencies that contract with the state.
She said Michigan law allows child-placing agencies to turn away families in private cases based on their sincerely held religious beliefs but not when they place state-supervised children.