Arizona Anti-Marriage Amendment Still Held In the House

Jim Burroway

May 2nd, 2008

As we reported earlier, the Arizona House of Representatives has not yet formally passed the proposed anti-marriage constitutional amendment. The measure requires approval from the House and the Senate before it can be sent on to the voters.

At issue is what exactly the proposed amendment would ban. The new proposal reads, “Only a union of one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in this state.” Opponents say that the word “union” could be applied to more than just marriage, opening up the state to lawsuits over domestic partnerships.

Peter Gentala, general council for the Center for Arizona Policy (CAP, Focus On the Family’s official state policy council for Arizona), said proponents have no plans to target domestic partnerships with this new effort. Lambda Legal warns however that a similar measure in California resulted in years of litigation there, and that CAP used the language of Arizona’s current law to argue against the state expanding benefits to domestic partners in Arizona.

The measure has been placed on the House calender every day since last week’s preliminary approval, and every day the delay has been delayed. This means there is still time to let your representative know what you think about the proposal.

Remember: there are two representatives for each legislative district. If you don’t know who your representatives are, the Equality Arizona web site can find them for you and provide you with their phone numbers and contact information. You can call then directly, or you can even send a message via Equality Arizona.

Jarred

May 2nd, 2008

Peter Gentala, general council for the Center for Arizona Policy (CAP, Focus On the Family’s official state policy council for Arizona), said proponents have no plans to target domestic partnerships with this new effort.

I’d say that statement ranks right up there with “the check’s in the mail” and “of course I’ll still respect you in the morning.”

queerunity

May 2nd, 2008

im actually shocked this is being held up so long

Timothy Kincaid

May 2nd, 2008

Jim,

Is the end of the legislative session coming up some time soon?

Jim Burroway

May 2nd, 2008

I think they are trying to wrap it up by May 12 because that’s when the legislators’ per diem goes lower, but I’m not aware of a hard and fast deadline. If someone knows the answer, please chime in.

lurker

May 2nd, 2008

that’s EXACTLY what they said when we voted on one-man-one-woman prop 22 in California … “nope, we’re not going after gay rights in any way shape or form, just want to reserve civil marriage as a straight-only club” and now everytime there’s any little legal battle over couple’s personal inheritance to discrimination policy to legislation on domestic partnerships they roll out that vote (btw, the campaign got lots of out-of-state funding from religious conservatives in Utah).

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