Texas could add $180 millionto its economy over three yearsif it allowed same-sex couples to marry, according to a study from the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law released Wednesday.

The study predicts that more than 23,000 same-sex couples in Texas would marry within three years if the state allowed them to. The legalization of gay marriage would mean a surge in gay weddings, the study estimates, creating a nearly $15 million boost to sales tax revenue over three years.The economic impact would likely be greater if Texas extended marriage rights to gay couples ahead of neighboring states like Louisiana and Oklahoma, because the state could become a wedding destination for same-sex couples, said Christy Mallory, one of the study's authors.But chances are slim that conservative Texas lawmakers would allow same-sex marriage unless the courts force states to do so.

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