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« on: January 04, 2005, 01:15:34 AM »

Traditional Marriage Exalted in Every State's Amendment Vote

by Jody Brown and Allie Martin
January 3, 2005

(AgapePress) - Advocates of traditional marriage are celebrating a clean sweep the morning after Election Day. All 11 states considering constitutional amendments defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman passed those initiatives. The margin of victory was decisive in all cases.

[Photo compliments of Concerned Women for America]
Robert Knight   
"It's no contest. Americans are saying 'yes' to marriage and 'no' to 'gay' counterfeits" That's the reaction of the Culture and Family Institute's Robert Knight to Tuesday's polling results regarding state constitutional amendments that essentially ban same-sex "marriage."

"There is absolutely no question as to where Americans stat on this issue," Knight continues. "The eleven states with amendments on the ballot represent diverse populations that have come together to defend marriage."

Following are those states -- along with the voting percentages -- that voted on and approved a constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

State Nov. 2 Results
(for - against)

Arkansas
75% - 25%

Georgia
77% - 23%

Kentucky
75% - 25%

Michigan
59% - 41%

Mississippi
86% - 14%

Montana
66% - 34%

North Dakota
73% - 27%

Ohio
62% - 38%

Oklahoma
76% - 24%

Oregon
57% - 43%

Utah
66% - 34%

Comparable initiatives have passed in several other states -- Alaska, Hawaii, Nebraska, Nevada, Missouri, and Louisiana -- by similar margins over the past few months. These referendums on marriage are seen by some as a backlash to a 4-3 decision by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court in November 2003 that legalized same-sex marriage in that state. Knight has a message to people who live in the Bay State.

"If I were a Massachusetts citizen right now, I'd be furious that four judges in my state took it upon themselves to declare marriage obsolete, to be replaced with an absurd, gender-neutral model," he says. "If Bay State citizens had voted on an amendment this time around, they too would have passed it, like their fellow American citizens. Perhaps they'll get a chance someday."

Gary Bauer of the Campaign for Working Families echoes Knight's comments. "This issue does not deeply divide America," he tells Fox News. "The country overwhelmingly rejects same-sex marriage, and our hope is that both politicians and activist judges will read these results and take them to heart."

And Dr. D. James Kennedy agrees. The senior pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale says Americans do not buy into the rhetoric of homosexual activists -- and that the vote proves the nation overwhelmingly supports God's view of marriage.

"It gives a very clear message to everyone involved that the people of the United States overwhelmingly want to maintain marriage as a union between one man and one woman, and that gay marriage has been resoundingly rejected and defeated," Kennedy says.

Still, Dr. Kennedy -- like many other religious leaders -- says a Federal Marriage Amendment is the only remedy to activist judges who could conceivably overturn these voter-approved constitutional amendments. In fact, in one of those states -- Georgia -- homosexual-rights activists have already promised to take the issue to court.

Nov. 2 a 'Dress Rehearsal' for FMA?
Matt Daniels of the Alliance for Marriage reacts to the groundswell of support for traditional marriage. "We've got a tidal wave sweeping across America in favor of protecting marriage," he tells Associated Press. "In state after state, we are winning at the state level. The American people are speaking with a united voice -- they don't want to see marriage struck down in court."

But Daniels says that is indeed a possibility, explaining that homosexual-rights activists are likely to challenge all of these recently approved amendments in court. That is why, he says, there is still a need for a Federal Marriage Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

"Unfortunately, the forces that are trying to strike down our marriage laws in court will not be content to let the American people speak democratically at the state level," he says. "They're going to challenge all of these state constitutional amendments in federal court with lawsuits after the election."

But the Alliance for Marriage president is not discouraged. "The good news is [that] we're seeing a political dress rehearsal for the national battle over our marriage amendment, which is about to begin," he says.

And he says the overwhelming victories for marriage amendments on November 2 boost the prospects for a Federal Marriage Amendment. His organization already has plans, he says.

"We will go forward with a reintroduction of our marriage amendment in the new year," Daniels says. "And if we get our marriage amendment through the Congress, what you're seeing in the states is a prelude of the victory that we're going to see across the country for our marriage amendment."

A vote on that amendment (Senate Joint Resolution 40) was turned away in the U.S. Senate on July 14 by a 48-50 vote. The same measure (House Joint Resolution 56), however, was approved in the House on September 30 on a 227-186 vote.

According to survey conducted by National Quorum, 67 percent of Americans either strongly or somewhat favor the amendment put forth by the Alliance for Marriage; 30 percent either strongly or somewhat oppose it.

http://news.christiansunite.com/Religion_News/religion02057.shtml

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