N.C. senate approves putting same-sex marriage amendment on 2012 ballot

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    Sep 14, 2011 10:36 AM GMT
    All my friends were posting this as their facebook statuses today (all were angry about it) so I figured I put it on RJ for everyone. Whatever you're political beliefs, you have to admit this was a pretty slimy move by the republicans.

    from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/09/13/north-carolina-gay-marriage-constitutional-amendment_n_960415.html

    WASHINGTON -- North Carolina residents will vote whether to amend the state constitution to ban same-sex marriage in May 2012, after the state Senate approved legislation placing the measure on the ballot on Tuesday.

    The amendment would bar legal recognition of any union besides marriage between one man and one woman, including civil unions and domestic partnerships for gay and straight couples.

    Local business leader Martin Eakes was at the capitol in Raleigh on Tuesday trying to argue against the amendment.

    "This was one of the worst days that I've ever seen in my home state, and I've seen some pretty bad days over the past 25 years," Eakes said of the vote to advance the amendment.

    Republican leaders in the state legislature elected not to allow any public comment, which enabled them to fast-track the legislation to a vote and passage only 24 hours after it was first introduced. The state House of Representatives passed the same bill on Monday.

    The bill passed by a 30-16 vote in the state Senate, in which Republicans hold a 31-19 majority.

    Constitutional amendments do not require action by the governor, which means Gov. Bev Perdue (D) has no veto power, and the amendment will now go before voters in the 2012 primary election.


    "This is deeply disappointing and hurtful to thousands of North Carolina same-sex couples who simply want to be able to care for each other and their families, as all families do," said Rea Carey, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force in a statement.

    Same-sex marriage is already outlawed in the state. The amendment would block challenges to that ban on constitutional grounds.

    Indeed, during floor debate, several Republicans said a constitutional amendment was needed to prevent "activist judges" from overturning the marriage ban. High courts in other states have ruled that same-sex marriage bans are unconstitutional.

    "Moms and dads are not interchangeable,” said the bill's sponsor, state Sen. James Forrester (R-Gaston), during floor debate. “Two dads don't make a mom. Two moms don’t make a dad. Children need both a father and a mother.”

    But the law could have unintended consequences for many unmarried couples, both gay and straight.

    Maxine Eichner, a professor at the University of North Carolina School of Law, and some of her colleagues prepared a report on the proposed amendment in June that outlined potential problems. Even with the revisions made in the last week, Eichner said in an email, the amendment could still interfere with existing child custody and visitation rights and invalidate trusts, wills and end-of-life directives in favor of an unmarried partner, no matter the genders of the unmarried pair.

    "The Amendment still has the potential to invalidate domestic violence protections for members of unmarried couples, as an Ohio court did with even narrower language in its state’s marriage amendment," Eichner warned.

    Further, the North Carolina amendment would invalidate domestic partner benefits now offered by several municipalities.

    That effect on unwed couples, combined with the anticipated campaign to sway voters on the amendment, led several state business leaders -- including Eakes -- to hold a press conference at the state capitol Tuesday just prior to the vote.

    Mitchell Gold, CEO and co-founder of Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, and Bob Page, CEO and founder of Replacements Ltd, argued that the inevitable campaign urging voters to pass the constitutional amendment would have a detrimental effect on children who may just be learning they're gay. Gold and Page said the atmosphere churned up by the campaign would also discourage businesses from relocating to the state.

    "This amendment is a black eye. What's bad about this for business is it's sickening. ... It is sickening that they would put kids' lives on the line for their political ambitions," Gold said.

    Eakes, who is CEO of Self-Help Credit Union and the Center for Responsible Lending, said that while he is not a spokesman for Bank of America, he has served on the company's advisory council and could attest that the North Carolina-based bank has some 25,000 gay staff members.

    "If you want to figure out a way to push Bank of America to move its headquarters from Charlotte to New York, pass this amendment," Eakes said.

    Republican lawmakers, repeating a tactic from the House debate on Monday, pushed back against the idea of a business impact by citing a report from the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council. GOP legislators said nine of the 10 states with the strongest economies prohibited same-sex unions, according to the report.

    State Sen. Dan Soucek (R-Watauga) said the bottom 10 in the report all have laws that "deteriorate natural marriage."

    However, at least 76 local CEOs signed a letter urging a rejection of the marriage amendment. And polling shows a majority of the North Carolina public opposes the bill.
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    Sep 14, 2011 10:38 AM GMT
    Video from the discussion in the House:



    Rep. Henry M. Michaux, Jr. (D). Interesting comments, no one seems to be paying attention to him though.
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Sep 14, 2011 10:53 AM GMT
    To all our republican apologists out there





    When the F**k are you gonna learn ?

    When they hang you personally in effigy?
  • DCEric

    Posts: 3713

    Sep 14, 2011 11:57 AM GMT
    Thank you once again, party of small government.
  • Dirtjock

    Posts: 1

    Sep 14, 2011 12:02 PM GMT
    How much state revenue would be lost if ALL of the LGBT population of the State of North Carolina refused to pay taxes unless we're given the same rights by our State Constitution? Money Talks People. Suddenly, the impetus for the Egyptian and Libyan people's revolution hits closer to home. Inequality is Bad for Business!
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    Sep 14, 2011 1:23 PM GMT
    The one positive I'm seeing from this is that the responses on facebook are overwhelmingly negative and that recent polling suggests a majority of North Carolinians oppose the ban... however these people (young voters) probably won't bother to make it out to the polls on May 8.

    "Some 61 percent of North Carolinians say gay marriage should remain illegal, but 55 percent would vote against a constitutional amendment, according to a poll released last week by Public Policy Polling, a Raleigh, N.C., firm that often works for Democrats. Republican voters are split, with 47 percent saying amending the state constitution goes too far."
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    Sep 14, 2011 1:34 PM GMT
    I am actually surprised it has taken the right-wing fundie state so long.

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    Sep 14, 2011 1:54 PM GMT
    ncujock saidAll my friends were posting this as their facebook statuses today (all were angry about it) so I figured I put it on RJ for everyone. Whatever you're political beliefs, you have to admit this was a pretty slimy move by the republicans.

    from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/09/13/north-carolina-gay-marriage-constitutional-amendment_n_960415.html

    WASHINGTON -- North Carolina residents will vote whether to amend the state constitution to ban same-sex marriage in May 2012, after the state Senate approved legislation placing the measure on the ballot on Tuesday.

    The amendment would bar legal recognition of any union besides marriage between one man and one woman, including civil unions and domestic partnerships for gay and straight couples.

    Local business leader Martin Eakes was at the capitol in Raleigh on Tuesday trying to argue against the amendment.

    "This was one of the worst days that I've ever seen in my home state, and I've seen some pretty bad days over the past 25 years," Eakes said of the vote to advance the amendment.

    Republican leaders in the state legislature elected not to allow any public comment, which enabled them to fast-track the legislation to a vote and passage only 24 hours after it was first introduced. The state House of Representatives passed the same bill on Monday.

    The bill passed by a 30-16 vote in the state Senate, in which Republicans hold a 31-19 majority.

    Constitutional amendments do not require action by the governor, which means Gov. Bev Perdue (D) has no veto power, and the amendment will now go before voters in the 2012 primary election.


    "This is deeply disappointing and hurtful to thousands of North Carolina same-sex couples who simply want to be able to care for each other and their families, as all families do," said Rea Carey, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force in a statement.

    Same-sex marriage is already outlawed in the state. The amendment would block challenges to that ban on constitutional grounds.

    Indeed, during floor debate, several Republicans said a constitutional amendment was needed to prevent "activist judges" from overturning the marriage ban. High courts in other states have ruled that same-sex marriage bans are unconstitutional.

    "Moms and dads are not interchangeable,” said the bill's sponsor, state Sen. James Forrester (R-Gaston), during floor debate. “Two dads don't make a mom. Two moms don’t make a dad. Children need both a father and a mother.”

    But the law could have unintended consequences for many unmarried couples, both gay and straight.

    Maxine Eichner, a professor at the University of North Carolina School of Law, and some of her colleagues prepared a report on the proposed amendment in June that outlined potential problems. Even with the revisions made in the last week, Eichner said in an email, the amendment could still interfere with existing child custody and visitation rights and invalidate trusts, wills and end-of-life directives in favor of an unmarried partner, no matter the genders of the unmarried pair.

    "The Amendment still has the potential to invalidate domestic violence protections for members of unmarried couples, as an Ohio court did with even narrower language in its state’s marriage amendment," Eichner warned.

    Further, the North Carolina amendment would invalidate domestic partner benefits now offered by several municipalities.

    That effect on unwed couples, combined with the anticipated campaign to sway voters on the amendment, led several state business leaders -- including Eakes -- to hold a press conference at the state capitol Tuesday just prior to the vote.

    Mitchell Gold, CEO and co-founder of Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, and Bob Page, CEO and founder of Replacements Ltd, argued that the inevitable campaign urging voters to pass the constitutional amendment would have a detrimental effect on children who may just be learning they're gay. Gold and Page said the atmosphere churned up by the campaign would also discourage businesses from relocating to the state.

    "This amendment is a black eye. What's bad about this for business is it's sickening. ... It is sickening that they would put kids' lives on the line for their political ambitions," Gold said.

    Eakes, who is CEO of Self-Help Credit Union and the Center for Responsible Lending, said that while he is not a spokesman for Bank of America, he has served on the company's advisory council and could attest that the North Carolina-based bank has some 25,000 gay staff members.

    "If you want to figure out a way to push Bank of America to move its headquarters from Charlotte to New York, pass this amendment," Eakes said.

    Republican lawmakers, repeating a tactic from the House debate on Monday, pushed back against the idea of a business impact by citing a report from the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council. GOP legislators said nine of the 10 states with the strongest economies prohibited same-sex unions, according to the report.

    State Sen. Dan Soucek (R-Watauga) said the bottom 10 in the report all have laws that "deteriorate natural marriage."

    However, at least 76 local CEOs signed a letter urging a rejection of the marriage amendment. And polling shows a majority of the North Carolina public opposes the bill.
    They ALSO changed the date at the last minute from being on the ballot for the GENERAL election in November to the Primary election in May because they didnt want anyone coming to the polls other than those who get to choose the REPUBLICAN candidate. Very slick and slimy move. Disgusting, vile and UN AMERICAN filth.
  • DCEric

    Posts: 3713

    Sep 14, 2011 2:03 PM GMT
    blackhawksfan saidI am actually surprised it has taken the right-wing fundie state so long.



    That "right-wing fundie state" hasn't given Republicans full control of the state government in since the modern Republican= conservative, Democrats=liberal arrangement came to be. Until now.
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    Sep 14, 2011 2:13 PM GMT
    directly after the rally i went to yesterday, another facebook event was created for voting no in May, and the number of ppl invited and attending.. has grown exponentially, within 5 minutes of first viewing it, it grew from 400, to 1500 attending..

    i really think with enough support, and the exposure facebook provides, it wont pass.
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    Sep 14, 2011 2:31 PM GMT
    Not surprisingly, the hate group NOM is very much behind this action.
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    Sep 14, 2011 3:00 PM GMT
    A little more insight from the Winston-Salem Journal:

    "Campbell — who opposes the amendment — said that she thinks that the amendment may stand a better chance of passage in May than November because Republicans will be voting in large numbers in presidential and gubernatorial primary contests. Democrats won't have as many exciting races on the ballot.

    "The general reason you place something on the November ballot is to get as broad a cross-section of the voters as possible," Dinan said.

    Dinan believes there's no doubt that voters will approve the amendment banning same-sex marriage. He cited the long list of states that have approved such amendments, especially in the South.

    "The lowest score was 57 percent in Virginia," he said. "I don't think anybody has doubt about whether it would pass. We have had 31 times that these things have been submitted and 30 times they were successful. Only one time was it defeated (in Arizona), and then it came back and won."

    North Carolina law already forbids same-sex marriage, and opponents of the referendum argue that a constitutional amendment is unneeded. Rep. Bill Owens, D-Pasquotank, agreed but also voted in favor of the referendum. He said a vote against the amendment would be "misconstrued that you are in favor of same-sex marriage" — which he is not."

    Nathan Tabor, the chairman of the Forsyth County Republican Party, said that local Republicans, tea-party members and conservatives will be raising money to run pro-amendment ads on television, in print and in social media.

    Alex Miller, the interim executive director of Equality North Carolina, said that his organization also will raise money to educate the public about the proposed amendment and try to persuade voters to reject it.

    Miller said that ads that proponents have run on television in other states contained language that was "ugly, hurtful and divisive, and that goes for this legislation, too."



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    Sep 14, 2011 3:04 PM GMT
    Its all theater. This will be decided by SCOTUS and all these state laws will be trumped. And its NC for god sake. Is anyone really surprised?
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    Sep 14, 2011 3:07 PM GMT
    Dirtjock saidHow much state revenue would be lost if ALL of the LGBT population of the State of North Carolina refused to pay taxes unless we're given the same rights by our State Constitution? Money Talks People. Suddenly, the impetus for the Egyptian and Libyan people's revolution hits closer to home. Inequality is Bad for Business!


    Not much. Money does talk. Which is why it wouldnt work.
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    Sep 14, 2011 3:26 PM GMT
    Dallasfan824 saidIts all theater. This will be decided by SCOTUS and all these state laws will be trumped. And its NC for god sake. Is anyone really surprised?
    actually it's called politics.. and its disgusting. Period.
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    Sep 14, 2011 3:31 PM GMT
    TropicalMark said
    Dallasfan824 saidIts all theater. This will be decided by SCOTUS and all these state laws will be trumped. And its NC for god sake. Is anyone really surprised?
    actually it's called politics.. and its disgusting. Period.


    Thast what I said icon_question.gif
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    Sep 14, 2011 3:32 PM GMT
    Dallasfan824 said
    TropicalMark said
    Dallasfan824 saidIts all theater. This will be decided by SCOTUS and all these state laws will be trumped. And its NC for god sake. Is anyone really surprised?
    actually it's called politics.. and its disgusting. Period.


    Thast what I said icon_question.gif
    Ok ok.. yeah in a way..icon_twisted.gif
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19119

    Sep 14, 2011 3:34 PM GMT
    Dallasfan824 saidIts all theater. This will be decided by SCOTUS and all these state laws will be trumped. And its NC for god sake. Is anyone really surprised?



    Exactly! We need to look at the bigger picture here. As unfortunate as this is for LGBT community living in NC, in a round-about way the discriminatory attempt in the state may actually serve to help the LGBT community nationally in the long run as the anti-gay bigotry in this state is exposed for what it is. I believe that sometimes a step backwards can actually serve to move you 2 steps forward in the long run.
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    Sep 14, 2011 3:40 PM GMT
    CuriousJockAZ said
    Dallasfan824 saidIts all theater. This will be decided by SCOTUS and all these state laws will be trumped. And its NC for god sake. Is anyone really surprised?



    Exactly! We need to look at the bigger picture here. As unfortunate as this is for LGBT community living in NC, in a round-about way the discriminatory attempt in the state may actually serve to help the LGBT community nationally in the long run as the anti-gay bigotry in this state is exposed for what it is. I believe that sometimes a step backwards can actually serve to move you 2 steps forward in the long run.
    C'mon Todd, lets hear you publicly admit it's dirty republican politics..
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    Sep 14, 2011 3:42 PM GMT
    The Repubs promised to "focus like a laser beam" on the economy and "jobs jobs jobs".

    WHEN THE FUCK ARE THEY GOING TO START DOING THAT?
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    Sep 14, 2011 3:46 PM GMT
    RickRick91 saidThe Repubs promised to "focus like a laser beam" on the economy and "jobs jobs jobs".

    WHEN THE FUCK ARE THEY GOING TO START DOING THAT?
    They can't.. as todd says they need to make sure we take steps BACKWARDS..
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19119

    Sep 14, 2011 3:47 PM GMT
    TropicalMark saidC'mon Todd, lets hear you publicly admit it's dirty republican politics..



    At the end of the day, dirty Republicans, or dirty Democrats for that matter, can put anything they want up for a vote and then it's up to the people. If the citizens of North Carolina pass this (and I am skeptical that they will) then the blame rests with the people.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19119

    Sep 14, 2011 3:50 PM GMT
    TropicalMark said
    RickRick91 saidThe Repubs promised to "focus like a laser beam" on the economy and "jobs jobs jobs".

    WHEN THE FUCK ARE THEY GOING TO START DOING THAT?
    They can't.. as todd says they need to make sure we take steps BACKWARDS..



    I didn't quite put it that way in all fairness, Mark. What I said is that sometimes a step backwards can actually lead to two steps forward in The Bigger Picture. I do not believe in the "How goes North Carolina Then Goes The Entire Country" mentality. In fact, I think the opposite would prove true.
  • Latenight30

    Posts: 1525

    Sep 14, 2011 3:51 PM GMT
    I just want to know what everyone is so afraid of with same sex couples?
    I wonder what this does the common law marriages for the state? Or marrying a cousin?
    Could you marry a male cousin?
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    Sep 14, 2011 3:51 PM GMT
    CuriousJockAZ said
    TropicalMark saidC'mon Todd, lets hear you publicly admit it's dirty republican politics..



    At the end of the day, dirty Republicans, or dirty Democrats for that matter, can put anything they want up for a vote and then it's up to the people. If the citizens of North Carolina pass this (and I am skeptical that they will) then the blame rests with the people.
    You just couldn't garner the courage to state what i asked.. you had to frame it so you didnt have to.. Your colors are brightly showing.