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MARRIAGE DIGEST: N.Y. judge upholds state marriage law

NEW CITY, N.Y. (BP)–A New York state judge upheld the state’s marriage laws Oct. 21 and refused to legalize same-sex “marriage.”

While the ruling by Justice Alfred Weiner is a blow to homosexual activists, it is but one of several cases within the state seeking to overturn New York’s marriage laws. Cases by Lambda Legal and the American Civil Liberties Union are still pending. In addition, the lawyer involved in the losing case said he would appeal.

“The struggle to obtain equal justice under the law for same-sex couples in New York state will continue,” Normal Siegel, who filed suit on behalf of 10 homosexual couples, told the Associated Press.

The 10 couples — which included the mayor of Nyack, N.Y., and his partner — was filed earlier this year after they were denied marriage licenses, the AP reported.

Lambda Legal issued a statement Oct. 22 saying the fight is far from over.

“No doubt this question — whether same-sex couples have an equal right to marry under the state’s Constitution — will be answered by the state’s high court,” the statement read.

Weiner is an acting judge on the state Supreme Court, which in New York is a lower court. The New York Appeals Court is the highest court.

Although New York’s law defines marriage as between a man and a woman, it has no Defense of Marriage Act specifically prohibiting same-sex “marriage.”

Including New York, nine states are defending their laws in court against those seeking to legalize same-sex “marriage.” Pro-family leaders assert that the only way to protect the traditional definition of marriage from the courts is to pass a marriage amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

PATH CLEAR IN OHIO — The Ohio Supreme Court refused Oct. 21 to take a constitutional marriage amendment off the November ballot, clearing the way for voters in the battleground state to have a say on the issue of same-sex “marriage.”

In a 6-1 ruling, the high court rejected arguments from opponents who asserted that the amendment’s ballot language was misleading, the Associated Press reported.

Although the amendment is winning in polls, it has generated some controversy. It would ban both same-sex “marriage” and civil unions, and possibly also prohibit domestic partner benefits at state universities.

The governor and the state’s two U.S. senators oppose it, saying the domestic partner language would hurt Ohio’s economy. All three are Republicans.

But it’s leading in polling. An Ohio Poll released Oct. 22 had the amendment winning 57 percent of likely voters’ support. Forty percent opposed. The poll of 757 likely voters was conducted Oct. 11-17.

Minus the action of an intervening court, 11 states will vote on marriage amendments Nov. 2.

AMENDMENTS POPULAR — Marriage amendments in Arkansas and Michigan appear on their way to passage, new polls show.

Michigan’s marriage amendment is supported by a margin of 65-27 percent, according to a Detroit News poll of 600 likely voters Oct. 18-20.

Arkansas’ marriage amendment is favored by a margin of 80-17 percent, according to an Arkansas News Bureau/Stephens Media Group poll of 502 likely voters Oct. 4-6.

AFL-CIO OPPOSED — While polls show that Michigan’s marriage amendment has the support of a majority of voters, the AFL-CIO is telling its members to vote against it.

The homosexual news website 365gay.com reported Oct. 11 that AFL-CIO President Mark Gaffney claims the amendment would overturn domestic partner benefits that have been negotiated in union contracts.

Amendment supporters, though, say it only will impact state-sanctioned benefits. The amendment reads: “The union of one man and one woman in marriage shall be the only agreement recognized as marriage or similar union for any purpose.”

IND. GOP MAKES PROMISE — Republicans in Indiana are promising to pass a state constitutional marriage amendment if they win the state House Nov. 2.

The Indianapolis Star reported Oct. 6 that GOP House candidate have drawn up a list of 11 proposals they will tackle if they take over the House, which is currently controlled by Democrats with a 51-49 advantage. One of those proposals includes a marriage amendment, which was killed during the last session by the Democratic speaker of the House.

WIN IN CALIF. — Two California pro-family organizations won a legal victory Oct. 15 when a state court judge ruled that they could take part in a same-sex “marriage” lawsuit.

Superior Court Judge Richard Kramer ruled that Campaign for California Families and the Proposition 22 Legal Defense Fund could take part in the defense of the state’s marriage law. The city of San Francisco has sued the state, seeking to overturn the law and legalize same-sex “marriage.”

Liberty Counsel is representing the Campaign for California Families, while the Alliance Defense Fund is representing the Proposition 22 Legal Defense Fund.

KY. CHURCH GETS INVOLVED — A conservative mega-church in Louisville, Ky., is spending money in advertisements to promote traditional marriage — at a time when citizens in the state are preparing for a Nov. 2 vote on a state constitutional marriage amendment.

Southeast Christian Church, a non-Southern Baptist Convention church, is spending some $150,000 to get the message out that traditional marriage is “God’s plan for marriage,” The Louisville Courier-Journal reported Sept. 28.

The church is running ads on billboards, in newspapers and on the sides of buses, the newspaper said.

“Our goal is to represent the biblical truth of marriage to our community that affirms marriage at a time when the traditional definition of marriage is under attack,” church pastor Bob Russell said.

The campaign will continue beyond the election, Russell told the newspaper.
For more information about the national debate over same-sex “marriage,” visit http://www.bpnews.net/samesexmarriage

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  • Michael Foust