News Articles

MARRIAGE DIGEST: NYC voters favor ‘gay marriage’; Wash. court may strike marriage law; amends. advance in 5 states

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)–Highlighting a nationwide cultural divide, a new poll shows that a majority of New York City voters favor legalizing same-sex “marriage” — putting the city at odds with the rest of the country.

The poll by Quinnipiac University shows that by a 51-40 percent margin New York City voters favor allowing homosexuals to “marry.” Nine percent are undecided.

Nationwide, the trend is just the opposite. A Quinnipiac poll last December showed that nationwide 65 percent of registered voters oppose legalizing same-sex “marriage,” while 31 percent support it.

The divide between New York City and the rest of America also was seen during the November election, when voters nationwide went 51 percent for President Bush but NYC went 76 percent for Sen. John Kerry.

New York state is in the middle of the legal battle over same-sex “marriage.” In early February a New York state judge overturned current law, ruling that “gay marriage” must be legalized. That ruling — which was against New York City — is being appealed, and the final decision likely will come from the Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court.

The Quinnipiac poll found a racial divide on same-sex “marriage.” While 61 percent of white voters in New York City support “gay marriage,” 54 percent of black voters oppose it. Fifty-one percent of Hispanics in the city support same-sex “marriage.”

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg chose to appeal the ruling by the state judge even though he supports same-sex “marriage.” In the Quinnipiac poll, voters support his decision by a 49-44 percent margin.

“There’s a big split between black and white voters over gay marriage,” Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, said in a statement. “These same black voters support Mayor Bloomberg’s decision to appeal the gay marriage ruling by a Manhattan Supreme Court justice, but not for the same reason.”

The poll of NYC voters was conducted Feb. 22 through March 1 of 1,435 registered voters.

The nationwide poll was conducted Dec. 7-12 of 1,529 registered voters.

WASH. COURT TO HEAR CASE — The Washington state Supreme Court will hear arguments March 8 in a case that could lead to legalized same-sex “marriage.”

Although Washington has a “marriage protection act” law explicitly banning “gay marriage,” two lower courts last year declared it unconstitutional. Both cases were appealed to the state high court.

On the day the court hears the case, pro-family leaders will hold a Mayday for Marriage rally in Olympia on the capitol grounds. The event, which will encourage state lawmakers to pass a constitutional marriage amendment, is being organized by the pro-family group Washington Evangelicals for Responsible Government.

“If we are going to change the meaning of marriage it deserves a debate and we should come to agreement as a society,” WERG President Joseph Fuiten said in a statement. “When the Washington Supreme Court hears lawyers argue about marriage, they should consider the recent ‘morals vote’ cast by the majority of Americans and what that really meant.

“It is not just the fate of gay marriage that will be decided. If the court decides to impose its values on the rest of us, it will do so as a raw exercise of arbitrary power well outside the consent of the governed.”

Fuiten and Ken Hutcherson, a Seattle-area pastor, are scheduled to speak.

Massachusetts began recognizing court-ordered “gay marriage” last year.

FIVE STATES ADVANCE AMENDMENTS — Constitutional amendments banning “gay marriage” have advanced in five additional states.

In South Dakota, the House passed an amendment by a vote of 20-14 Feb. 28, sending it to citizens for a November 2006 vote. It previously passed the Senate.

On Feb. 26, Virginia’s General Assembly completed the first of a three-step process when the House of Delegates passed an amendment 79-17 and the Senate passed it 30-10. It must pass again next year before it can appear on a statewide ballot in 2006.

In South Carolina, an amendment passed the state House on a 96-3 vote March 1. It must pass the Senate and be signed by the governor if it is to be placed on the 2006 ballot.

In Iowa, a marriage amendment passed a House committee on a 13-6 vote March 3. Although it likely will pass the full House, it faces opposition in the Senate, where it was rejected last year, according to The Sioux City Journal. Because of Iowa’s lengthy amending process, it would not appear on a statewide ballot until 2008.

In Tennessee, an amendment passed the Senate on a 29-3 vote Feb. 28. It now moves to the House, where it is likely to pass. It would go before voters in 2006.
For more information about the national debate over same-sex “marriage,” visit http://www.bpnews.net/samesexmarriage

    About the Author

  • Michael Foust