Anti-gay marriage amendment introduced

Conservative lawmakers joined by Roman Catholic bishops, other anti-gay religious leaders

by Matt Comer  Editor
Published: February 24, 2009 in News

RALEIGH, N.C. — Conservative lawmakers in North Carolina introduced an anti-LGBT, anti-family state constitutional amendment on marriage today in the state capital.

Chiefly sponsored by State Sen. Jim Forrester and Rep. Paul Stam, the “North Carolina Defense of Marriage Amendment” would ban all recognition of same-sex marriages, domestic partnerships or other civil, domestic unions.

Roman Catholic Bishops Michael Burbidge of Raleigh and Peter Jugis of Charlotte joined Forrester, Stam and other legislators and conservative activists in a press conference at the N.C. Legislative Building this morning.

This year marks the sixth attempt to push through the discriminatory amendment by anti-gay members of the North Carolina Legislature.

The North Carolina Religious Coalition for Marriage Equality released a statement in the wake of the amendment’s introduction

“We are saddened that some of our legislators continue to use the issue of same-sex marriage to try and re-write our state’s constitution and create a hostile environment for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender citizens in North Carolina,” said Jack McKinney, pastor of Pullen Memorial Baptist Church in Raleigh and co-chair of N.C. Religious Coalition for Marriage Equality’s steering committee.

McKinney added, “Such an amendment would not only deny equal marriage rights, which are already denied to gay North Carolinians, but could also prohibit any recognition of civil unions, domestic partnerships, or similar relationships in the state. The language of the bill is so broad it could prevent private companies from extending domestic partner benefits to their employees.”

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