Serena Freewomyn

Arizona Legislators Propose Same-Sex Marriage Ban

Filed By Serena Freewomyn | February 17, 2008 12:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics
Tags: Arizona, gay marriage, marriage equality, same-sex marriage

Last week, Republicans in the Arizona legislature introduced a bill that would define marriage as being "between one man and one woman." How silly is that, seeing as Arizona already has a law that prohibits same-sex marriage? I thought that lightning couldn't strike the same place twice.

Apparently it can, especially when many conservative voters are vowing to stay home on election day to protest what Mike Huckabee has called John McCain's coronation. And we all know nothing gets conservatives to the polls like an anti-gay initiative.

According to the Arizona Republic:

House Speaker Jim Weiers said the measure will just put current state law in the Constitution so that it withstands any future legal or legislative challenges.

"I don't know why people should be objecting to this," he said.

But some Democrats question the need for the constitutional amendment because the state law has been upheld by the courts. They say the measure is about driving GOP turnout in the 2008 election.

"This is obviously a political ploy to rally a wing of the Republican Party that can't rally themselves for something positive," said Sen. Paula Aboud, D-Tucson. Aboud, a lesbian, has introduced a bill to create state-recognized domestic partnerships, which is unlikely to even get a hearing. "This is their attempt to raise the turnout in November, and who is the lucky recipient of the ultraconservative movement? This is about getting out the base. They get out their base by ... promoting fear and hate instead of compassion and inclusion and understanding."

Yeah for redundancy and fearmongering. Now if my elected "representatives" would just get around to balancing the state budget, I could rest a little easier.

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Same thing here. :( Why worry about something that's already against the law when there are plenty of other issues that need addressing.

Instead, they claim that the courts could overturn the law, so since it's sooooo important, they should put it in the Constitution. I'm thinking murder is a big, important law. I'm a big fan of littering legislation too. By their logic, these two should also go in the Constitution.

And then we have a copy of some of our other laws instead of a guiding document on basic rights.

I know, right? Murder is bad. We need more laws against murder.

Lightening is striking twice in Florida, too. We also have a law that defines marriage as between one man and one woman but, after 4 years, the thumpers finally got enough signatures to place a vote to amend the state Constitution. The only thing that may save us is 60% is now required to pass an amendment. And our republican gayvenor Charlie Crist has stated he will not support the amendment as he's a "live and let live" kinda guy.

I don't think it's really that silly. Having not read the two pieces of legislation you mention, and not being at all informed about Arizona politics, I could be wrong, but my guess is that the two serve overlapping, but separate goals.

In terms of getting married in the state, they both seem to prohibit same-sex couples from doing so. However, a ban on same-sex marriage only prevents people in the state from getting married. If a couple gets married in MA and moves to AZ then that law wouldn't apply to them. But you can be sure the conservatives don't want couples to then get state marriage benefits. This new piece of legislation would allow the state to say that whatever benefits it offers to "married" couples would only apply to straight couples.

Currently, the state wouldn't have to recognize the marriage currently, thanks to DOMA. This appears to be a mini-DOMA, passed in many states since the passage of DOMA.

Dave, In 1997 the Florida Legislature adopted the Defense of Marriage Act, which specifically states marriage is the "union between one man and one woman" and bars the state from recognizing same-sex marriages performed in other states. The 2008 proposed amendment: "Inasmuch as marriage is the legal union of only one man and one woman as husband and wife, no other legal union that is treated as marriage or the substantial equivalent thereof shall be valid or recognized."

Seems to me the thumpers want to extend discrimination into the state constitution for domestic partners (there are registries in some Florida counties), those that are/may become civil unionized (not in Florida, yet) and any other marriage-lite designations that may pop up in the future. We have many, many, many retired seniors in Florida who won't/can't marry for various reason who live together. This amendment to the Florida Constitution will therefore take away long established rights for ALL non-married Floridians, gay, straight and seniors.

Trust me, we have a lot more important problems in Florida to deal with than discrimination against non-married Floridians.

i find it amazing that in today's world, an individual would openly admit to ignorance and prejudice. imagine being proud of being a bigot. and AZ wants to put it up for a vote. amazing!

"The only two things that are infinite in size are the universe and human stupidity. And I'm not completely sure about the universe." -- Albert Einstein