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NC House Passes Anti-Gay Marriage Amendment

Jim Burroway

September 12th, 2011

After three hours of debate and without public notice or input, the North Carolina General Assembly passed a proposed constitutional amendment by a vote of 75-42. A three-fifths approval was needed to put the measure on the ballot. Eight Democrats joined Republicans in passing the measure. The proposed amendment would not only place a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, but it would also bar civil unions and, possibly, domestic partner benefits. Some details from today’s decorous debate:

State Rep. Marcus Brandon (R-Guilford), the only openly gay state lawmaker, told his fellow lawmakers that people yelled “abomination” at him as he walked through the capitol building that afternoon, and said he was told he was “going to hell.”

State Rep. Mickey Michaux (D-Durham), a black lawmaker, had an exchange with (House Majority Leader Rep. Paul) Stam on the floor in which he pointed out that the U.S. constitution “still says I am three-fifths of a person.” Michaux said on the floor that he was attempting to highlight how hard it would be to remove the discriminatory language in the future.

At one point, state Rep. Jennifer Weiss (D-Wake) called out Stam for eating popcorn during the debate “while other’s rights are stripped away.”

The house voted to put the proposition on the ballot for a special election in May rather than holding the referendum during the Presidential election in November. Democrats feared that putting the vote on the November ballot would hurt President Barack Obama’s chances for carrying the state in 2012. Republicans agreed to move the date in order to increase Democratic support for the Amendment. However, with the May date coinciding with the Republican primary and with no Democratic presidential primary taking place, the earlier date is likely to significantly boost turnout for amendment supporters. Other observers also believe those same supporters would then boost the chances of socially-conservative candidates like Texas Gov. Rick Perry or Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann.

Given the pressing crisis of massive numbers of same-sex couples battering county courthouses demanding marriage licenses, the Senate is expect to take the measure up very quickly, perhaps as early as Tuesday.

Comments

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joe arevalo
September 13th, 2011 | LINK

Hateful. Don’t go or spend your money in NC.

A Reader
September 13th, 2011 | LINK

The statement “State Rep. Marcus Brandon (R-Guilford), the only openly gay state lawmaker” would seem to be inaccurate, as he is apparently a Democrat, not a Republican.

Kelly Casey
September 13th, 2011 | LINK

great job NC. you pride yourself on being in the christian south while the founder of your sect would like to come down and kick you butt for bastardizing his words and ways. woe to you idiots and hypocrites.

Charles
September 13th, 2011 | LINK

North Carolina may pass such a law, but it doesn’t stop a gay couple from getting married in North Carolina. At this time it just won’t be recognized by the state of North Carolina. I wonder what Jesse Helms’ gay granddaughter thinks about this legislation/ She held public office in North Carolina.

customartist
September 13th, 2011 | LINK

Go ahead North Carolina, take away rights.

You think your 10% unemployment is bad now!?!

Just wait till I take all of my Design Customers to other States Manufacturers and Retailers for their Furniture. I am making a list right now.

North Carolina is also one of the largest Pork Producers in the nation. No more Smithfield Pork Products pass these lips! I guaran-damn-tee you!

MKYLL
September 13th, 2011 | LINK

The state that gave us John Edwards and Bishop Eddie Long- lol.

Paul
September 14th, 2011 | LINK

So if I have this right…

The GOP Party in NC hates gays so much they were willing to move the amendment vote away from next November. To attract enough Dem votes to pass it in the legislature now they were willing to increase the chances of Obama taking the state next year.

For all their drive to make sure Obama is a one-term president pissing on gays is more important.

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