poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

La. Senate fails to pass anti-gay marriage amendment

The Louisiana Senate fell one vote short of passing a proposed state constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage and civil unions.

Today's vote was 25-8. The measure needed a two-thirds vote -- or 26 votes in the 39-member Senate. Six members were either absent or did not vote.

The issue is not dead. The amendment's sponsor, Sen. John Hainkel of New Orleans, can try to round up one more vote for the measure and ask for another vote.

A similar measure is awaiting debate in the House, where it would need approval from 70 lawmakers in the 105-member body.


N.C. senator files bill to prohibit same-sex marriages
By David Ingram

RALEIGH- The N.C. Senate's top Republican moved to block one route to legalizing same-sex marriage yesterday, one week before Massachusetts is scheduled to begin sanctioning such unions.

Sen. James Forrester, R-Gaston, filed a bill to amend the state constitution along with 14 other co-sponsors, 13 Republicans and one Democrat. The amendment would ban civil marriage and all other legal unions between two people of the same sex.

"Marriage is the union of one man and one woman at one time," the proposed amendment reads. "This is the only marriage that shall be recognized as valid in this State."

State law already defines marriage that way, but Forrester said that amending the constitution would reinforce the law. The amendment also includes language that North Carolina would not recognize same-sex unions originating in other states, such as Massachusetts.


Rabbi Devon A. Lerner Responds to Catholic Action League Suit

BOSTON, May 12 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Rabbi Devon Lerner -- co- chair of the Religious Coalition for the Freedom to Marry -- issues the following statement in response to the suit filed against the SJC justices by Robert P. Largess, the vice president of the Catholic Action League:

"We are deeply saddened by this latest attempt to deny gay and lesbian families their civil rights. The SJC has done its job well by upholding the founding principle of this country: liberty and justice for all. There is no rational reason to withhold equal marriage rights from same-sex couples. Largess and the groups he represents don't like the SJC ruling because of their personal and religious beliefs. The constitution was written to protect citizens from personal prejudices.

"We don't remove justices or try to undermine their decisions simply because we don't agree with their decisions. It's ironic that the suit attacks the same court system that has historically protected minority rights, including the rights of Catholics.

"The Goodridge decision supports religious liberty as well as civil rights. It gives every faith tradition the right to accept or reject same-sex religious unions, and it gives same-sex couples, religious or secular, the right to choose to enter into a civil marriage. Civil marriage provides families with essential rights, benefits and protections that cannot be obtained by any other legal means.


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