Gay marriage is still not legal in New Hampshire.
Lawmakers unexpectedly rejected a bill Wednesday that would have made the state the sixth in the U.S. to approve gay marriage.
The Democratic-controlled house voted down the bill in a 188 to186 vote.
That happened hours after the Senate approved the bill along party lines.
Governor John Lynch has said he will not sign the legislation unless it better protects churches and their employees from lawsuits if they refuse to marry gays.
The House has voted to further negotiate with the Senate.