Friday, January 27, 2006

Virginia Marriage Amendment Update

We previously reported that Virginia's marriage amendment passed the Senate and was headed to the House of Delegates. It appears that the remaining votes are actually quite minor:
The Senate voted 28 to 11 to follow the House of Delegates in approving the amendment. Though each chamber still must pass the measure adopted by the other, their wording is identical and support among the senators and delegates is strong.
The amendment will then go directly to the ballot - a process that does not involve the governor:

Virginia Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D) does not have to review the amendment resolution. He could veto a separate bill that specifically calls for the November referendum, but press secretary Delacey Skinner said he will not do so.

"The governor's position is that a marriage is between one man and one woman," Skinner said.

Eighteen state constitutions define marriage as a union between a man and a woman, many through amendments approved since 2003, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures...

Virginia law already defines marriage as the union of a man and a woman and does not allow for civil unions, but proponents said the amendment is needed in case courts try to force the state to recognize same-sex marriages or civil unions performed in other states.

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