A Daily news digest by Jasper van Santen

North Carolina passes Amendment 1 banning same-sex unions – guardian.co.uk

In News, Politics on May 9, 2012 at 00:14

Opponents of the North Carolina ban on same-sex unions react to its adoption in Amendment 1 of the state's constitution

North Carolina passes Amendment 1 banning same-sex unions 

hopefully it will go differently in Minnesota…. 

Voters in North Carolina have approved a constitutional amendment banning same-sex unions, according to the Associated Press.

It will become the 30th state to define marriage solely as a union between a man and a woman. With more than half the precincts reporting, unofficial returns showed the amendment passing with about 60% for to 40% against.

Same-sex marriage has been illegal in the state since a law enacted in 1996. The amendment will enshrine the ban in the state constitution. It can now only be amended by another vote by the people.

The amendment declares that “marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognised in this state”.

Supporters of Amendment 1 declared a victory for “God’s institution” of marriage. “With God’s grace we have won at overwhelming victory,” Tami Fitzgerald, chairwoman of Votes For Marriage NC, told supporters.

“We are not anti-gay, we are pro-marriage,” she said. “The whole point is you don’t rewrite the nature of God’s design for marriage based on the demands of a group of adults.”

Jeremy Kennedy, of the Coalition to Protect All NC Families, said: “It is just a skirmish in a battle, a war that we will win.”

In an emotional speech, he told supporters they had “left no stone unturned” in fighting the amendment.

“Tonight we walk away proud with our heads held high and we will continue to fight this.”

Twenty-eight states had already passed a constitutional amendment defining marriage as solely between a man and a woman. The amendment in North Carolina goes beyond current state law by preventing other forms of domestic unions from carrying legal status.

Lawyers and campaigners for the anti-amendment campaign have warned this could cause a host of problems for unmarried couples, including erasing health benefits for the children of public employees in certain parts of the state. They also say it could disrupt protection orders for unmarried couples and impact victims of domestic violence. The term “domestic legal union” is not defined by North Carolina law.


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